Pango's Web-Based RFID Application Tracks Assets

By M.L. Baker
Pango Networks Inc. announced Tuesday the launch of a new Web-based framework that can let hospitals know where expensive pieces of equipment are at any time.

The framework accepts RFID and other signals onto standards-based networks such as Wi-Fi.

Though currently used to track assets in only about one in 10 health care organizations, this use of RFID is expected to rise nearly 500 percent over the next 18 months, according to a market study by SpyGlass Consulting.

However, adoption is slowed because some applications require dedicated networks and difficult-to-integrate software.

Pango Locator, a Wi-Fi-based tracking application has a Notifier tool that allows pieces of equipment to send alerts to the network based on a device's motion and status.

In addition, the location of nearly any device that hooks into the network can be tracked without an RFID tag.

The new Web-based Pango platform can translate disparate location systems into a common language and use input from multiple sources to pinpoint an asset's location.

"What we've done is develop the capability to normalize different sources of input and pull in different systems," said Richard Barnwell, Pango's CTO.

The technology also plugs in readily to any existing legacy systems that hospitals use to track assets, said Michael Campbell, EVP of business development for Pango.

"Pango doesn't do asset management, we just make the asset location-aware," he said.

"Pango's strategy is right on the mark," said Abner Germanow, program manager, Enterprise Networks, IDC.

"We're seeing an influx in the variety of technologies that offer location-based information, and as standards evolve so will the complexity of deployments."

Right now, that means that multiple proprietary applications are "aggregating massive amounts of disparate information," he said.

"Pango has addressed the need to fuse disparate sources of location-based information to provide a common ground for the advancement of location-based systems in any environment."

Several companies offer RFID tracking services to hospitals. These include Agility Healthcare Solutions and Radianse.

This article was originally published on 09-27-2005