RFID News Roundup

Published: October 6, 2023

HID Linq offers centralized reader management; Foot Locker expands its RFID deployment in Eastern Europe; Soracom and UScellular to deliver affordable IoT data; Ultrahuman ring tracks fitness with BLE. 

HID Linq Offers Centralized Reader Management 

Identity solution technology company HID Global has developed a centralized reader management solution, HID Linq. The company says HID released the solution to simplify the configuration and updates of physical access systems. It is previewing HID Linq at Global Security Exchange (GSX) 2023. 

The solution aims to make the management of readers easier and more efficient. The technology is compatible with HID’s entire line of HID Signo readers, while it will be extended over time across the company’s other devices and connectivity and management software. The goal is to streamline the process of remotely (and securely) managing access control devices and credential technologies, whether on-premise, cloud-based, or mobile deployments. 

HID is demonstrating the solution to show how users can simultaneously update multiple HID Signo readers connected to a Mercury red board controller via Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP) or by using a serial adapter over a USB connection. The company claims that even the largest reader fleets can be updated quickly and easily. 

Foot Locker expands its RFID deployment in Eastern Europe

Sporting goods retailer Foot Locker has expanded its use of RFID technology to manage inventory in its Eastern European stores. The solution from Nedap is designed to improve the omni-channel shopping experience through inventory accuracy and in-store efficiency. 

Nedap first deployed its ID Cloud platform using UHF RFID for Foot Locker in 2018. ID Cloud allows stores to improve their in-store stock accuracy to more than 98 percent, according to Nedap, by improving how staff track and manage their inventories. Foot Locker can then offer customers an improved omni-shopping experience while exploring other potential RFID use cases such as supply chain and loss prevention. The system’s RFID data also helps Foot Locker to comply with brand regulations.   

Foot Locker uses Nedap’s train-the-trainer deployment model. That made deployment across the Eastern European stores efficient, according to Nedap. The roll-out was completed in early 2023. The retailer reports that the resulting high inventory accuracy ensures that Foot Locker puts the correct item on display across all Foot Locker stores in Europe.   

Soracom and UScellular to Deliver Affordable IoT Data  

IoT connectivity company Soracom has partnered with mobile network operator UScellular to offer an IoT data plan to enable wireless sensor deployments by simplifying data costs and future-proofing regulatory compliance, the companies say. Soracom’s Plan-US now offers nationwide, multicarrier 4G, 5G, LTE-M, and NB-IoT data. It does so through major U.S. and regional carriers for overage, even in remote areas.  

The monthly data packages make deployment costs more straightforward, the companies say. The bundles will be available from 1 MB to 10 GB to support IoT deployments. Those using Plan-US can also add profiles enabling global roaming or purchase maximum multicarrier coverage via Soracom Subscription Containers. 

Plan-US is available now and includes Soracom’s network management console and API at no added cost while providing access to various advanced platform services.  

Ultrahuman Ring Tracks Fitness with BLE 

Fitness technology company Ultrahuman has released a connected smart ring that tracks and records the health conditions of the individual wearing it. The smart ring includes a range of sensors, Nordic SoC’s 2.4 GHz Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) device, and a processor with 1 MB flash memory. 

The wearable device includes sensors that capture sleep, movement, heart rate, heart rate variability, and skin temperature. The fitness company reports that it comes with no screen or haptic vibrations, thereby limiting any distractions for the individual wearing it. Instead, the SoC sends data to the users iOS or Android smartphone via BLE, and the users can then review their health measurements in an app. 

The system also includes content related to meditation, workouts, sleep, and metabolic health. The nRF52840 SoC uses a built-in battery that typically lasts five days between charges.