Interviews With Microtracking, SmartRes and MetraTec

At RFID Journal LIVE! Europe 2011, I had the opportunity to conduct video interviews with three interesting companies.
Published: May 23, 2012

The RFID industry keeps evolving, with solutions providers introducing new products to address end-user business issues, and new companies entering the market with innovative products. At last month’s RFID Journal LIVE! Europe 2011 conference and exhibition, I had the opportunity to conduct short video interviews with three of our exhibitors, which are now available in our online video library.

Microtracking, which launched a new service by the same name, essentially lets anyone with a Bluetooth-enabled ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) reader interrogate tags based on the Electronic Product Code (EPC) standard, and have the data transferred to any standard cell phone. An application running on the phone connects to the Microtracking server and uploads the EPC data to an EPC Information Service (EPCIS) database, where it can then be accessed securely by supply chain partners.

The system is designed for systems integrators that want to help clients get quickly set up with an EPCIS connection, or for farmers, fisheries and other small businesses that don’t have much money to invest in setting up an EPCIS database, so they can share data with supply chain partners (see Microtracking Launches an Easy Way to Share EPC Data).

SmartRes has a unique method of producing UHF and high-frequency (HF) RFID transponders. Instead of placing copper on a layer of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) or some other plastic substrate, and then using acids to etch away some of the copper until it’s the right thickness, SmartRes utilizes thin copper wire as the antenna. This eliminates the etching, which can leave behind harsh chemicals that are bad for the environment. SmartRes can also put the transponder on biodegradable materials, so the tags can be thrown in landfills without a problem (see Smart Res Explains Its Unique Way of Producing RFID Transponders).

Finally, MetraTec GbmH, a German engineering company that manufactures reader modules for passive HF and UHF systems, as well as active RFID readers, has developed modules for use in smart cabinets and other applications. The company has the ability to customize modules for almost any type of application. This capability is growing in importance as companies look to embed RFID into products to make them smarter (see MetraTec RFID Reader Modules).

There were other interesting companies at LIVE! Europe as well. I wish I could have gotten to all of them, but I was the event’s emcee, so there just wasn’t time. You can view all of the latest RFID innovations at RFID Journal LIVE! 2012, our tenth annual RFID conference and exhibition, being held on Apr. 3-5, 2012, in Orlando, Fla.

Mark Roberti is the founder and editor of RFID Journal. If you would like to comment on this article, click on the link below. To read more of Mark’s opinions, visit the RFID Journal Blog, the Editor’s Note archive or RFID Connect.