Savi Technology Unveils New Generation of Networked Products to Enhance Real-time Visibility of Goods and Supply Chain Assets

Feb. 1, 2004
SUNNYVALE, CA - Savi Technology, Inc., a leading provider of RFID networks for real-time supply chain visibility, asset management and security, today

SUNNYVALE, CA - Savi Technology, Inc., a leading provider of RFID networks for real-time supply chain visibility, asset management and security, today announced a new portfolio of breakthrough software and new high-performance, data-rich RFID tags that more affordably improve the flexibility, functionality and depth of end-to-end supply chain visibility. Designed to enhance the interoperability of various automatic identification and data collection (AIDC) technologies, these new products further enhance Savi's modular product line that enables AIDC solutions to be quickly configured to optimize results for the customer's particular application. The products are:

* Savi SmartChain® Client Tools - upgraded, "user-friendly" software for processing AIDC-generated data.

* SmartChain Mobile Manager - upgraded software inside handheld mobile computers that consolidates multiple existing applications.

* SmartChain Site Manager - upgraded data collection controller and filter.

* SaviTag ST-651 - new high-performance active RFID tag for mid-size supply chain assets such as pallets.

* SaviTag ST-654 - new, high-performance, ultra data rich active RFID tag for all types of supply chain assets, from pallets and containers to transport vehicles.

Significantly, the upgraded data collection products - Savi SmartChain Client Tools, SmartChain Mobile Manager, and SmartChain Site Manager - serve as the "on-ramp" to military and commercial real-time networks, especially the U.S. Department of Defense's In-Transit Visibility (ITV) / Total Asset Visibility (TAV) network - the world's largest AIDC-supported cargo tracking system. The products also support capture and transfer of data from technologies based on emerging EPCglobal standards.

Built on more than 15 years of experience designing, producing and integrating with all types of AIDC technologies - from bar codes, passive and active RFID to sensors and satellite tracking systems - Savi Technology's new products incorporate the best of "lessons learned" from developing RFID-enhanced products and networked solutions worldwide, and from the latest directions in automated item- and case-level tracking technologies. This new generation of AIDC-linked products enable greater depth of visibility, often called "nested visibility," as well as broader end-to-end visibility, of shipments and their contents from point of origin to final destination.

Savi Technology's software and active RFID products have been incorporated in building the DoD's ITV/TAV network infrastructure, with over 800 nodes in more than 45 countries, and in developing the Smart and Secure Tradelanes (SST) network, the largest industry-driven initiative to improve the security and efficiency of transporting containerized cargo that extends to 16 seaports worldwide, including six of the 10 largest. In addition, this product line enables the technical convergence of these public sector and commercial networks for greater interoperability with RFID systems, including other AIDC technologies and those based on EPC standards.

The products were unveiled at the Savi Technology RFID Center near Washington DC during this week's invitation-only "RFID Symposia for DoD Suppliers", which is being co-hosted by Savi Technology, Symbol Technologies and Matrics. Separately, Matrics announced today a new dual-frequency handheld reader it has developed with Savi that captures and relays data from both its EPC-compliant Class 0 tags and Savi's active RFID tags to multiple software platforms, including the industry-leading Savi SmartChain platform. This new data capture capability provides new dimensions of real-time tracking, from the item level up to the container and vehicle transport levels throughout the supply chain.

"All of these products, available for government and commercial deployments, have been honed from 'lessons learned' in over a decade of providing solutions for one of the world's largest supply chains - the U.S. Department of Defense," said David Stephens, Savi's Senior Vice President-Public Sector. "These products are focused on the data collection part of the technology stack, and help integrate multiple AIDC technologies into our on-ramp to the ITV network. The ability to collect data automatically and feed it properly to ITV and to the Savi SmartChain platform is especially critical today because of the growing complexity of matching and integrating the right AIDC solution to the right supply chain application, whether it's bar codes or passive RFID for item and case tracking or active RFID for pallet, container, vehicle or equipment tracking."

"The products announced today are based on 6th generation technologies that address growing expectations for real-time visibility of products and their transport conveyances most anywhere in the supply chain, whether in-transit, in a yard or warehouse," Stephens added. "We've listened to what our marketplace wants, and we're delivering now with the first wave of new and enhanced products this year that raise the bar for the automation of end-to-end, top-to-bottom, supply chain visibility and management."

Savi emphasized that all the products are "backwards compatible" with existing government and commercial networks and are based on the company's EchoPoint(tm) technology, which uses dual radio frequencies for simultaneous short-range, slot-level tracking and long-range, wide-area location.

Following are more details of the new and enhanced products:

* Savi SmartChain Client Tools. This is workstation or laptop software that allows end users to perform various ad-hoc and end-user operations with RFID tag data. This application is built on top of the leading-edge Savi SmartChain platform, which is the only proven commercial network management and single-source platform linking RFID to software tools. SmartChain Client Tools enable the user to read, write, edit and commission tag data via an attached reader using UHF frequencies. Users can initiate tag collection and reporting and integrate the data with handheld tag reading devices.

* SmartChain Mobile Manager. This is software installed on RFID-enabled mobile handheld readers. SmartChain Mobile Manager software consolidates multiple existing applications, enabling users to have one source to easily scan and read in-tag data, edit the tag data and then write the data back to the tag through the mobile handheld. SmartChain Mobile Manager also provides export features allowing data files to be transferred between the client workstation and the handheld device. The user interface also has been simplified for easier usage and navigation in the field of operations. Significantly, Savi SmartChain Mobile Manager also provides the functionality to print barcode labels using an attached barcode label printers.

* SmartChain Site Manager. This is a new version of Savi's distributed data collection device controller and data filter. The updated SmartChain Site Manager ensures superior collection and delivery of real-time data from a wide variety of AIDC technologies to all types of networks, including the Savi SmartChain network platform. The SmartChain Site Manager includes improved configuration and management of local business logic for real-time process control, collection and distribution of local network alarms and alerts. It also provides remote management from other nodes on a SmartChain network, and the ability to easily manage push or pull software updates and device firmware updates for devices on the local SmartChain network.

* SaviTag ST-651. This is a new high-performance, active RFID tag designed for pallet tagging and other mid-size supply chain assets. Available with 8K or 16K of programmable memory and a temperature sensor, and compatible with the existing ITV RFID infrastructure, the ST-651 can hold critical tracking information and EPC identification codes of all items loaded on a pallet. The tag features long-range RF communication of 200 feet or more, works in heavy metal environments, and has omni-directional range and short-range wakeup capability for slot-level and choke-point tracking.

* SaviTag ST-654. This new high-performance product is an active, ultra data-rich tag suited for various applications, including tracking of shipping containers, vehicles and other large highly mobile equipment. It is the next-generation of the well-known SaviTag ST-410 used for years by the military; SaviTag ST-654, offers greater functionality in a smaller form factor, at a lower price and with new enhancements such as a replaceable battery. It is now available for military, other government and commercial usage. With up to 240K of programmable memory, these tags can hold simple data IDs linked to a server database or the complete manifest of trailers or containers to which they're affixed. Compatible with Savi's fixed and handheld Reader products, this enables users to instantly locate and identify the contents of a container whether in a yard, warehouse or port staging area, and at a range of more than 300 feet.

With 14 years of global logistics infrastructure experience, Savi is a leader in real-time supply chain asset management and security solutions. For additional information, visit