RFID/Wireless: Race to Utopia

Our technology correspondent examines where RFID and wireless communications currently stand as logistics and supply chain management enablers and then defines the remaining barriers to adoption. Just how far are we from real-time visibility?

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It’s no secret that mobile and wireless devices are handling more and more data and communications for businesses across all sectors. 

Within the supply chain, everything from smart phones, to voice-enabled devices, to RFID is changing the way logistics and transportation operations are being managed.

And with quick messaging devices and mobile Internet usage skyrocketing, the supply chain is bound to benefit even more from this largely “untethered” business environment over the coming years.

Over the next few pages we’ll look at how far RFID and wireless communications have come in the supply chain, where these technologies currently stand as logistics enablers, and then examine what barriers to adoption still remain. We’ll also attempt to show shippers just how close we are to achieving real-time supply chain management and logistics visibility— and just how far we need to go to realize that utopian vision.

RFID: Spending to increase dramatically

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) stands as one of the original technologies designed around supply chain processes. Rewind back about eight years, says Simon Ellis, practice director for supply chain strategies at IDC Manufacturing Insights, and RFID was one of the most hyped technologies in logistics and supply chain management.


About the Author

Bridget McCrea, Editor
Bridget McCrea is a Contributing Editor for Logistics Management based in Clearwater, Fla. She has covered the transportation and supply chain space since 1996, and has covered all aspects of the industry for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. She can be reached at [email protected]

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