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RedBite Plans Launch of Cloud-based Solution for Managing RFID Data

The company's RedEdge solution is already being used by an international postal organization, enabling hundreds of readers installed at locations around the world to be managed remotely.
By Claire Swedberg
Jan 30, 2014

British RFID software firm RedBite Solutions says it plans to launch a cloud-based service intended to make the installation of a radio frequency identification solution fast and simple, requiring no more than an RFID reader embedded with RedBite software and access to the Internet. RedBite will also offer an application programming interface (API) to enable users to integrate RFID data with their own software. The solution is being rolled out by an international intergovernmental postal organization, in scores of offices throughout the world, and is being used to track tagged items moving through those locations.

This year—the specific month has yet to be determined—RedBite is also preparing to release a commercial solution for similar deployments at other agencies, as well as for small companies, that would make RFID use simpler and less expensive than traditional RFID installations. The system being used by the postal organization required some customization of what can be considered a "private cloud" that the organization is hosting on a server located on its own premises. RedBite is now designing a commercial version, though it will not specify what work remains to be done. With the commercial version, users would simply embed RedBite software onto the reader and then sign onto the RedBite-hosted server via the Internet in order to manage and retrieve tag reads, says Alex C. Y. Wong, RedBite's CEO.

RedBite's Alex C. Y. Wong
RedBite was launched in 2006 by members of the Auto-ID Lab at the University of Cambridge, to develop a simple alternative to RFID middleware (see UK Software Startup Aims to Simplify RFID Deployments). The company's first product was an appliance server (or its smaller version, the RedMini), a piece of hardware that plugs into the reader and functions as middleware for filtering and managing read data. One of RedBite's first customers was Asian agribusiness group Wilmar International, which used the appliance server at its factories in China, Malaysia and Indonesia. However, Wong says, RedBite found that its solution still ran up against complexities with installations, since a server dedicated for the RFID system was required to manage the collected read data, or the user would need to install RedBite's RFID software on its own server.

"This is an archaic way of implementing RFID solutions," Wong states. "With cloud technologies, we completely remove the local 'muddleware' that silos and shields useful RFID reader management data."

With the RedEdge platform, RedBite's middleware runs on a cloud-based server instead of in an appliance installed at the user's premises. "The reader talks directly to the cloud, with no onsite middleware at all," Wong explains. The firm has spent the past two years developing its RedEdge solution.

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