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HID Global intros ceramic Brick and Slimflex on-metal tags ••• GAO RFID launches new 2.45 GHz active readers ••• Smartrac unveils extra-compact UHF RFID inlays for retail applications ••• OnlineLabels.com adds RFID labels to product lineup ••• Datalogic acquires 20 percent stake in CAEN RFID ••• TimBar uses Shelfbucks' beacon platform for point-of-purchase displays.
By Beth Bacheldor

GAO RFID Launches New 2.45 GHz Active Readers

GAO RFID has announced a new range of RFID readers that the company says is capable of identifying GAO's proprietary 2.45 GHz battery-powered RFID tags from a distance of up to 100 meters (328 feet) away. Included in this family of readers is the 2.45 GHz Gain Adjustable RFID Reader with Wi-Fi capabilities (product ID: 217002), the Handheld 2.45 GHz RFID Reader (product ID: 217005) that also functions as a bar-code scanner, and the Portable 2.45 GHz USB RFID Reader (product ID: 217003). Each model can be used for a variety of applications that require the identification and tracking of assets, inventories and monitoring, the company reports.

GAO's gain-adjustable reader (product ID: 217002)
With the gain-adjustable reader, a user can control the device's sensitivity by adjusting the antenna gain. This allows the reader to boast a very flexible tag identification range that can be as low as 3 meters (9.8 feet) and up to 100 meters (328 feet) away, according to GAO RFID, and the flexible range ensures selective targeting of RFID tags by distance, which allows users to set up a variety configurations to meet their needs using a single type of RFID reader. The reader has a direct mode and a buffering mode. In direct mode, it uploads messages to a host system in real time via an 802.11b Wi-Fi connection. In buffering mode, it receives and saves up to 800 data sets of the last read tags, which are uploaded only when requested by the host system.

The new handheld reader is a sturdy, dust-proof and waterproof handheld unit built for onsite use that comes with a 3.2-inch touchscreen and economical power consumption, according to GAO RFID. The device is equipped with a USB 2.0 port, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and optional GPS capabilities, and uses a Microsoft Windows-based operating system that runs the RFID data-collection software. It also features 1D and 2D bar-code scanning capabilities for applications requiring both RFID and bar-code technologies. Other optional add-ons enable the integration of high-frequency (HF) or low-frequency (LF) RFID modules, allowing it to operate as a dual-frequency RFID reader. The device is well suited for applications involving logistics, supply chain and warehouse management, GAO RFID reports.

GAO's USB RFID reader (product ID: 217003)
The USB RFID reader is a small device that measures 59 millimeters by 18 millimeters by 9 millimeters (2.3 inches by 0.7 inch by 0.4 inch) and offers a read range of up to 20 meters (66 feet). The reader, which plugs into any USB-enabled computer, operates in two different modes. In direct mode, it transfers its data to the host computer in real time. In buffer mode, the device can store its last 100 received messages and upload them only when requested.

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