How Can African Businesses Deploy RFID Without Using UHF Systems?

By RFID Journal

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Ask The ExpertsHow Can African Businesses Deploy RFID Without Using UHF Systems?
RFID Journal Staff asked 14 years ago

We face a challenge here in South Africa—and in Africa, in general. Most GSM cellular network providers operate in the ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) band of 800 MHz, 900 MHz and 1800 MHz. Since most UHF RFID systems operate in this band as well, we can not use UHF systems. I realize we could utilize low-frequency (LF) or high-frequency (HF) systems, but they don't provide the read range we need. How can we get around this problem?

—Frustrated in South Africa


Dear Frustrated,

It is my understanding that in South Africa, the following frequency ranges are open for RFID: 865.6 to 867.6 MHz and 917 to 921 MHz. There are UHF tags that will work fine in these ranges. It is true that you don't have as much bandwidth as you would in the United States (where the range is 908 MHz to 922 MHz), but UHF RFID works fine in Europe, where there is far less bandwidth available. The UHF Gen 2 protocol is designed to employ very little bandwidth as efficiently as possible.

—Mark Roberti, Editor, RFID Journal

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