New RFID Spec Promising 600 Reads/Minute

As EPCGlobal is still finalizing its High Frequency (HF) Gen2 tag protocol standard, a source working with the group says they are seeing speeds of 600 reads/minute, compared with 100 reads/minute for today's HF tags and about 250 reads/minute for today's Ultra High Frequency (UHF) tags.

"That's huge," said Drew Nathanson, an RFID analyst for the Venture Development Corp..

Nathanson is finishing up a report on RFID activity within the transactional kiosk space and was surprised at the popularity of smartcard-reading kiosks that no longer support magstripes.

How many of these transactional kiosks does Nathanson see turning their back on their old friend, the regular credit card? Quite a few. In 2005, about 4.5 percent of such kiosks shipped with no magstripe support across the world, a figure that jumped to 11 percent last year and then to almost 16 percent this year, he said.

In the U.S.—where banks have been much slower to embrace smartcards—the numbers are smaller, but they still show an extremely steep increase, from 0.5 percent shipping in 2005 without magstripe support to 1.5 percent last year and four percent this year.