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RFID News Roundup

California Legislature advances RFID bills; four new UHF modules for Asia; EPCglobal accredits ADT test center; RFID bar-tending software available worldwide; NFC Forum membership grows; Stora Enso joins Parelec's RFID Partner Program; Identec Solutions secures new financing.
By Andrew Price
Jun 30, 2006The following are news announcements made during the week of June 26.

California Legislature Advances RFID Bills
The California State Assembly's Transportation Committee this week approved SB 433, a bill that would put a three-year moratorium on the use of RFID in driver's licenses, in an 11 to one vote. Last week, the Assembly's Education Committee approved SB 1078, which would put a three-year moratorium on the use of RFID in student identification cards, in a seven to four vote. Both bills are now up for an Assembly floor vote. If the Assembly approves them, they will be sent back to the Senate, which already approved earlier versions of the bills, for a second vote. Both bills were introduced by Senate Joe Simitian, who last year authored a more comprehensive bill (still pending) that would put a three-year moratorium on most identify documents issued in California. An RFID industry-based opposition group is pushing for the removal of the moratorium from all of the bills and is supporting an alternative bill, AB 2561, which would commission a study on the security and privacy issued surrounding remotely readable identification credentials, as well as the creation of an advisory board, composed of government and industry representatives, that would help write the report. AB 2561 was approved by the Senate's Judiciary Committee this week in a 3 to 1 vote and now goes to the Senate Appropriations Committee. The Assembly has already approved AB 2561. (For more background on the bills, see New RFID Bills Moving Through Calif. Assembly.)

Four New UHF Modules for Asia
WJ Communications, an RFID hardware manufacturer based in San Jose, Calif., has announced four new UHF RFID interrogators optimized for the growing Asian RFID market. The MPR7030 interrogator module for Taiwanese operates at 922 to 928 MHz. The MPR7040 interrogator module for Singapore and operates from 923 to 925 MHz. The MPR7050 interrogator for Hong Kong operates between 920 and 925 MHz. All three can read and encode tags compliant with the EPC Gen 1 Class 0 and Class 1 standards, as well as EPC Class 0+ and Zuma protocols. The WJR7090 interrogator for Korea and operates between 910 and 914 MHz in the UHF band. It can read and encode tags compliant with the EPC Gen 1 Class1 and Gen 2 Class 1 standards. All four modules operate on 1 watt of power and are designed to plug into an available PCMCIA Type II socket in any handheld, printer, forklift, portal or other mobile or fixed device. Pricing and availability is available from WJ Communications upon request.

EPCglobal Accredits ADT Test Center
ADT Security Services' RFID Performance Lab located in Boca Raton, Fla. has passed the EPCglobal Performance Test Center Audit and is now an accredited EPCglobal test lab. EPCglobal, a not-for-profit organization driving the commercial adoption of the Electronic Product Code (EPC) in global supply chains, has established standards for testing the ability to read tags on end users' products. ADT is the first company to have two labs accredited by EPCglobal. Earlier this year, EPCglobal accredited the ADT Performance Lab in Echt, Netherlands. Other EPCglobal accredited labs include the Pacific RFID Performance Solutions Center in Hsinchu, Taiwan Kimberly-Clark's Auto-ID Sensing Technologies Performance Test Center in Neenah, Wisc., and the RFID Research Center, a unit of the Information Technology Research Institute, Sam M. Walton College of Business, University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville, Ark.

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