Microsoft forms RFID council

Microsoft has formed an RFID council, a multi-supplier group that will study requirements for Microsoft’s software to participate...

Microsoft has formed an RFID council, a multi-supplier group that will study requirements for Microsoft’s software to participate in RFID data processing systems.

The company is seeking to equip its software packages, such as the SQL Server database, BizTalk Server business process management system, and Windows CE device operating system, with the ability to process volumes of data from RFID systems.

The council will feature Microsoft and seven other suppliers, such as Intermec and integrator Accenture.

“What we want to do is enable the partners to be able to create these solutions” that incorporate Microsoft software into RFID applications, said Scott Garvey, director of platform strategy at Microsoft.

The council will approach its mission in three phases. The first phase will look into how to comply with RFID mandates, the second involves helping companies achieve operational efficiencies through RFID, and the third entails boosting collaboration between business partners.

“Since we’re still early on in the maturity of the RFID market, these kinds of partnership arrangements are going to start up all over the place,” said Gene Alvarez, vice president of technology research services at Meta Group.

“This is a good move for Microsoft because it will help them out with their existing installed platform in the retail arena.”

The other members of the Microsoft Council are: GlobeRanger, which connects enterprise systems to RFID information; HighJump Software, which builds RFID-enabled solutions; Manhattan Associates, also a maker of RFID systems; Metro, a German retailer rolling out RFID; and supply chain systems maker Provia Software, which also uses RFID.

Last month, Microsoft also joined EPCglobal, an industry organisation eyeing standards for RFID technology.

Paul Krill writes for InfoWorld

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