RFID in '06 and '07: Years of Ups and Downs

By Renee Boucher Ferguson  |  Posted 12-29-2006

It turns out 2006 wasn't quite the banner year for RFID adoption that some analysts had predicted–particularly in the retail and consumer packaged goods sectors where fast growth was expected. And it looks like the coming year won't be much different.

Analysts are predicting some pockets of growth–asset tracking and contactless smart cards, for example–while others will still struggle to find a business case for radio-frequency identification.

The coming year is going to be increasingly about effectively finding ways to leverage RFID data–an area where software and services are going to be critical, according to ABI Research analyst Michael Liard.

"Companies are stuck in compliance modes with manual slap and ship [RFID implementations], but as people look to RFID in the enterprise, you're going to need software to handle that."

Liard predicts increasing activity around asset tracking that spans industry sectors such as health care, corporate IT asset tracking, retail and returnable asset tracking.

"The returnable asset space is a hot market to watch in 2007," said Liard. "[Companies] can use Gen 2 in that area, with returnable plastic pallets or totes and bins that are used outside the supply chain. It's about assets that leave your building and come back–a pooling concept."

Read the full story on eWeek: RFID in '06 and '07: Years of Ups and Downs