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RFID News Roundup

Star Systems intros Astria vehicle-registration RFID sticker; CAEN RFID unveils qIDmini key fob UHF reader; HID Global and Proxama team up to create secure NFC mobile programs; Laxcen signs licensing agreement with Round Rock Research; SK Telecom rolls out Wizturn Bluetooth 4.0 beacons and platform for indoor positioning; Datanet picked as ToolHound reseller in Asia-Pacific region.
By Beth Bacheldor
May 15, 2014

The following are news announcements made during the past week by the following organizations: Star Systems; CAEN RFID; HID Global, Proxama; Laxcen; SK Telecom; ToolHound, and Datanet.

Star Systems Intros Astria Vehicle-Registration RFID Sticker

Star Systems' Astria RFID registration decal
Star Systems International and Star RFID have jointly introduced the Astria, a vehicle-registration RFID sticker compliant with the EPC Gen 2 and ISO 18000-6C RFID standards. The Astria, available with Alien Technologys' Higgs3 or Higgs4 chip, incorporates Star's Venus antenna, designed specifically for use on vehicle glass. However, Star says that since it actually prints the transponder antenna, it can modify the antenna for just about any chip on the market, if needed. The Alien H3 chip features 96 bits of Electronic Product Code (EPC) memory (extensible to 480 bits), plus 512 bits of user memory that can be block perma-locked, as well as read password-protected in 64-bit blocks. The H4 chip has 128 bits of EPC memory, along with 128 bits of user memory that can be block perma-locked and read password-protected in 32-bit blocks. According to Star, one of the major benefits of the H3 and H4 chips is that a user can individually lock user memory banks from being read via the access code. Full-color graphics can be printed on both the adhesive and non-adhesive sides of the decal, the company reports. This, along with Astria's new Print & Program feature, allows variable data for a vehicle and its owner to be easily updated, and to then be seen and read from outside the vehicle. The Astria enables state highway and transportation departments to securely print and program all pertinent vehicle information in a single pass, on-demand, at their points of distribution. The information can be printed and encoded in the RFID chip, and be printed in human-readable fonts and bar codes on the decal's adhesive side. The Astria features a non-removable and non-transferable construction on the RFID transponder portion of the decal, and also offers optional, customized invisible ultraviolet (UV) ink print patterns to prevent the moving or falsification of decals. The Venus transponder is also tested and certified for performance and interoperability in such vehicle applications as tolling, registration and secure access systems by the OmniAir Certification Services (OCS), the test affiliate of the OmniAir Consortium (see Efforts to Aid Adoption of ISO 18000-6C RFID for Toll Collection Move Forward).

CAEN RFID Unveils qIDmini Key Fob UHF Reader

CAEN RFID has announced the qIDmini (Model R1170I) reader, a Bluetooth ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID interrogator in the form of a key fob measuring 3.9 inches by 2.1 inches by 0.8 inch (99 millimeters by 54 millimeters by 20 millimeters). The pocket-size reader, compliant with the EPC Gen 2 and ISO 18000-6C standards, can be used for a variety of applications, CAEN RFID indicates, including point of sale, mobile field sales, access control, inventory management, and service and maintenance. When paired to a smartphone or a tablet, the company reports, the qIDmini is a cost-effective alternative to more expensive handheld devices. As part CAEN RFID's easy2read family of products, the qIDmini has an integrated antenna suited for short- to medium-range applications; the typical read range is up to 90 centimeters (35 inches). The Bluetooth communication interface makes it suitable as a UHF RFID add-on for any Bluetooth-enabled host, such as a PC, a smartphone, a PDA or a tablet, the company reports. The reader is compatible with the Microsoft Windows XP/7 and Windows CE/Mobile, Android , and Apple iPhone and iPad platforms. It can operate both in wired mode (using a USB cable) or in wireless mode (through the Bluetooth interface). The interrogator can also operate in batch mode, allowing the storage of EPC codes into the internal memory when the communication link (USB or Bluetooth) is unavailable. In addition to an LCD display and a buzzer, the company says, the reader comes with a vibrator suited for signaling within noisy environments in which the buzzer cannot be heard, or in quiet environment such as libraries or hospitals. The qIDmini is available now via CAEN RFID's sales network.

HID Global and Proxama Team Up to Create Secure NFC-based Coupon and Loyalty Programs
HID Global and Proxama have announced a partnership to create a solution designed to enable the rapid deployment of secure Near Field Communication (NFC)-based coupon and loyalty programs. The solution combines Proxama's TapPoint platform for NFC-enabled smartphones with HID's Trusted Tag Services—the company's back-end software and server that authenticates each tag read before sharing data with an individual's phone or another NFC reading device—to deliver a frictionless consumer experience while eliminating the potential for fraud and abuse regarding retail coupon and loyalty programs, the two companies report. TapPoint is a system for managing NFC-based marketing campaigns for brand owners, retailers, agencies and media companies. It can be utilized to create a variety of campaigns, such as discount coupons, vouchers, loyalty cards, video and audio downloads, product information (price comparisons, for instance), games and application downloads. The system comes with wizard-based tools that businesses can employ to create URL-based campaigns, as well as advanced tools for creating more complex campaigns, the ability to assign locations to NFC RFID tags, campaign reporting software for analysis purposes, and integration capability with third-party campaign-management systems (see Argos Tries NFC in Its Stores and RFID News Roundup: Guinness Dispenses Stout, NFC Mobile Marketing Right from the Tap). HID Global's trusted tag is an NFC high-frequency (HF) passive RFID tag that operates in conjunction with the company's Trusted Tag Services. The tag's internal software, designed by HID, prompts it to generate a unique URL, as well as a series of trusted additional digits, thereby making every URL unique. The tag then changes that URL the next time it is read, thus serving as a one-time password (OTP). The URL can never be used more than once, the firm explains, making it impossible for someone to share a URL with others who may be located elsewhere (see HID Global Offers Security for NFC and HID Trusted Tag Offers Secure NFC Connection Without App). According to the two companies, the Proxama-HID solution will create coupon and loyalty programs in which consumers interact with HID Global's Trusted Tags, which feature security and privacy attributes that change on every tap, thereby providing customer proof-of-presence and making each tap uncloneable. As a result, Proxama's retailers and brands are protected from situations in which a single transaction can lead to rewards being collected multiple times. HID Global's Trusted Tags, which do not require special readers or other equipment for authentication, also enable Proxama to provide its retailer clients with robust campaign analytics and customer profile insights.

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