Microsoft Enters the RFID Arena

The radio frequency identification (RFID) market hit nearly $965 million last year, according to analyst firm Venture Data Corp., but less than 6% of that was from software sales.

That situation could change drastically now that software giant Microsoft Corp. ( www.microsoft.com) has joined the Auto-ID Center (www.autoidcenter.com) and formally announced its intent to support emerging RFID standards with its software products.

Microsoft’s efforts with the Auto-ID Center will initially focus on the manufacturing and retail supply chains. Future plans include working with its partners to develop affordable technology and solutions that take advantage of RFID to improve efficiencies throughout the supply chain.

“We’re focusing on building RFID-enabled technology into applications for the next generation of point-of-sale and supply chain management solutions,” explains Satya Nadella, corporate vice president, Microsoft Business Solutions Group. “We believe that our participation in the standards body will help move forward standardization and adoption of RFID-enabled technology. When that happens, our platforms, tools and applications will begin to include support for RFID technology.”

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