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HP boosts RFID spending

Antony Savvas

Hewlett-Hackard is to open an RFID (radio frequency identification) "noisy lab" to drive further development in the retailing and logistics product tagging technology.

The lab is described by HP as one of the most advanced in the fledgling RFID industry, and it will simulate a real-world “noisy” manufacturing and distribution centre where HP, its customers and partners can pilot and evaluate RFID technology and solutions.

Richard Dean, an analyst at IDC, said, “This lab further underscores HP's commitment to providing the right solutions for supply chain participants within the RFID and auto-sensing market.”

Designed to test products for industry compliance, the lab will increase HP’s current range of compliant RFID products from three to 40 in the near term, said HP.

HP is already shipping some RFID tagging products, including two HP Photosmart printer models and one HP Scanjet scanner model, to select retailers, which includes Walmart.

Other suppliers are investing heavily in RFID products. IBM last year pledghed to invest $250m (£133m) over five years on sensor and actuator products, often used in RFID products, as well as industrial automation technologies.

Sun is also promoting RFID products, including the Sun RFID offering for iForce Partners, the Sun RFID retail compliance programme, and RFID warehouse management software.


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