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RFID News Roundup

NXP, Enfucell unveil biopharmaceutical cold chain monitoring solution ••• Beacons influence retail sales to grow tenfold in one year ••• LAB ID NFC tags prove authenticity for new, limited-edition art ••• New GS1 US Advisory Services program offers customized GS1 standards implementation guidance ••• CenTrak adds Bluetooth capability to RTLS platform ••• STMicroelectronics intros NFC RFID chip for applications such as smart signs, Bluetooth pairing.
By Beth Bacheldor

New GS1 US Advisory Services Program Offers Customized GS1 Standards Implementation Guidance

Nonprofit standards organization GS1 US has announced a new GS1 US Advisory Services program designed to provide GS1 US members with customized technical and business expertise to address their unique GS1 standards implementation challenges. GS1's standards, according to the organization, uniquely identify products, services, assets and locations worldwide, in order to support global supply chain visibility and efficiency.

The GS1 US Advisory Services program offers consultations, training and educational materials to provide GS1 standards implementation guidance specific to a company's needs. The program can help with implementing GS1's US National Data Quality Program, assisting medical device companies with the implementation of GS1 standards to support unique device identification (UDI), and providing standards implementation guidance to the food-service industry, among other needs. Services may also include business process mapping and analytics, data governance assessment and guidance, individualized education and training, and the development of effective supplier on-boarding processes for GS1 standards integration.

The program is available to GS1 US members in a variety of industries. After a company has identified a business process challenge that requires GS1 US Advisory Services support, the organization develops a targeted plan of action, including customized training, to address those standards-implementation obstacles.

CenTrak Adds Bluetooth Capability to RTLS Platform

CenTrak, a provider of real-time locating systems (RTLS), has announced that it has added Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) capability to its Clinical-Grade Visibility platform, an RTLS designed for health-care providers to track assets, patients and personnel. The patent-pending, fully integrated BLE feature enables communication between nonproprietary Bluetooth devices and the platform, enabling customers to leverage BLE technology in their Clinical-Grade Visibility implementations.

According to CenTrak, the specifics of how BLE has been integrated into the CenTrak RTLS infrastructure are being shared with solution providers that have expressed an interest in leveraging this capability. Many attributes of the BLE standard will be available to end users utilizing CenTrak's RTLS, through valuable applications offered by CenTrak's solution partners. However, CenTrak is not at liberty to provide any additional details. "We want to be respectful of their request to allow them to make announcements in accordance with their sales and marketing programs," says Adam Peck, CenTrak's senior director of marketing.

In keeping with CenTrak's open architecture philosophy, the company reports, partners and end users can use the BLE technology alongside many other technologies, such as Wi-Fi and passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) or low-frequency (LF) RFID tags and readers. CenTrak has organized an efficient upgrade path for the more than 550 health-care facilities currently utilizing its Clinical-Grade RTLS in North America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. According to the company, several installations using the new Bluetooth technology are occurring this month.

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