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Singapore Airlines is piloting wearable RFID readers at the airport

2019-09-16

Many airlines are currently deploying or piloting a handheld device that supports UHF RFID, which can be used with a smartphone and then charge the phone on a single charging device. The small reader from Koamtac is designed to allow airlines to track baggage handling processes and airport logistics to understand where their marked baggage or parcels are located at check-in, loading into the aircraft and then unloading. The parcel handler at Changi Airport in Singapore is currently experimenting with the equipment.

To meet the growing demand for UHF readers in airlines and the logistics environment, Koamtac plans to release a wearable ring and glove scanner this fall. Koamtac has developed UHF-RFID technology in the existing KDC 470 barcode scanner so that employees in the company's inventory management, logistics supply and baggage handling can add UHF functionality during bar code scanning without having to upgrade the entire bar code solution .

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Changi Airport

Koamtac was founded in 2002 by engineer and developer Hanjin Lee to provide barcode solutions. Some companies, such as courier companies, have used the company's barcode scanners so that delivery personnel and loading vehicles can quickly complete the barcode scanning process when processing packages or sending packages to customers.

As the market demands for visualization of logistics and inventory management continue to increase, and more passive HF and UHF RFID tracking solutions emerge, Koamtac also provides RFID reading capabilities to its customers. Since 2010, the company has begun to develop RFID technology centered on reader modules. The reader modules are reasonably priced and can be operated on Android, iOS, MacOS, Windows or Tizen systems. The resulting products include the 13.56MHz HF reader in accordance with ISO 15693, the UHF readers in 0.5 watts and 1 watt, and the NFC-based KDC 470 reader in accordance with the ISO 14443 standard. The UHF version of the product was released about three years ago.

Lee said that the first version of the HF reader was built directly into the company's barcode scanner, which supports smartphones or tablets. HF and UHF readers are now modular units, so companies using the KDC 470 barcode scanner can simply add modules and upgrade firmware. The 1-watt version of the RFID reading and barcode scanning unit is equipped with a handle that can be placed on a charging stand when not in use, thereby simultaneously charging barcode scanners and RFID readers as well as smartphones or tablets.

“At first, RFID technology didn’t have a big market,” Lee said. “But we’re seeing an increase in demand,” especially airlines, who are looking to meet the requirements of the International Air Transport Association Resolution 753, applying UHF RFID tags to The airport can track the plan to read each passenger's baggage information. Since the resolution was first announced in 2018, many airlines around the world have been piloting or deploying RFID technology. In addition to airline baggage handling, he added: “Our biggest application is inventory and asset management.” The company is choosing to upgrade their barcode scanners to be able to track and read assets or products with RFID tags through their facilities. The situation when moving.

The reader can be easily connected to an existing barcode scanner and then used with a smartphone or tablet. The reader reads the tag ID number within a range of approximately 10 meters and then transmits the unique ID number to the server of the tablet or mobile phone via a Bluetooth connection. Typically, applications on the device can store and manage the collected read data. The Singapore airport is using these devices to track packages that are transferred between different aircraft. The airport has been using this technology for about one year in the management of immigration parcels.

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Workers can use a handheld reader to capture the tag ID number associated with each package as it is loaded onto or removed from the conveyor. When the reader reads the tag data information, the information is transmitted to a database where the owner can view the status of the package in real time. Lee said, "We have deployed a large number of readers for this solution" for airport use.

Koamtac also provides inventory management services for clothing stores. “There are a lot of portable readers on the market,” Lee said. The Koamtac version is the only version that offers USB and a Bluetooth connection to a phone or tablet that can be charged simultaneously with a paired device. In addition to the reader, Koamtac also provides a software development kit for collecting tags to read data and transfer it to the user's application.

“We can be compatible with any application,” Lee said. “Customers can use our programs, they can also use their own programs here, and they work fine.” This hybrid feature makes barcode scanning and RFID reading technology the most Effective places to provide solutions. “Barcodes will always be there,” but UHF offers an alternative to applications that focus on speed and automatically record identifying content at specific times or locations.

Airlines around the world are deploying RFID technology, but Asian airports and airlines have the most queries, Lee said. “They are handling baggage faster and faster.” The ring reader and ring bar code scanner are expected to be in It is available to baggage handlers at airports and warehouses later in the month. According to Lee, the KDC 180 ring and glove reader and barcode scanner help the staff free their hands by simply moving the tagged item without pressing the trigger or using a separate device.

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