Commercial vehicles to get an upgrade
In Kozhikode, they are taking steps to mandate that RFID be in all commercial vehicles. This is in an effort to help toll-collection methods and make toll roads easier and more convenient for the public. Before RFID was introduced, there was a manual punch system that slowed down the antiquated toll road process. Now, they will have automatic toll payment through the RFID windshield tags that the government will hand out to each driver. The Kozhikode government is trying to get the RFID windshield tag system passed as soon as possible so that it can get started as early as next month. The majority of the operational part of the switch will be handled by the private sector which caused some rise in complaints in Kozhikode.
In the United States, some states have automatic toll payments, but it is not an area wide ordinance like in this story. Automatic tolling is extremely convenient and efficient, and it one of the top applications for RFID. Hopefully, cities around the world will work toward adopting RFID for tolling to help with traffic, accidents, and people skipping tolls.
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Tracking Recalled Drugs
I have done several stories in the past about keeping medical centers and hospitals in check with RFID, but each one amazes me even more than the last. In this story, the use of RFID has reduced the time of checking recalled drugs from 20-30 hours to 2 hours. Imagine that. Once a horribly long task, now the over 300 recalled drugs a year can easily be taken out of the kits without having to open and reseal every single kit in the hospital. Caromont Regional Medical Center reduced hundreds of man hours per year and will see a definite return on investment by using RFID to identify and locate the recalled medicines.
In this North Carolina hospital, they are using Zebra printers and UHF readers in each scanning station. Each bottle or box of medication is scanned by a bar code scanner and then given a printed UHF RFID tag. Data is stored on the tag and checked whenever a recall is issued for a drug. KitCheck has been implemented in hospitals around the nation which makes for a more efficient process of kit maintenance. The Kitcheck system in this location is said to provide a 100 percent read rate for tags on and in the kits. Each kit is filled with 20 to 50 medications which regularly have to be checked and inspected.
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NFC still going strong
Disney has just released their own NFC figurines to be used with their new video game Disney Infinity. Disney wanted to improve the gaming experience by including NFC tags into their character figurines just like the other “toy story” we saw with NFC. Each figurine is powered via the Power Disc which is an NFC reader pad that reads the character’s tags. The characters earn extra abilities in the game with their NFC figurines and will communicate with the game itself. There are different game worlds and different figurines, and even different systems that these figurines can operate on, and that is the key selling point with these figurines. Each character provides the same experience and abilities on an Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, Wii U, and Nintendo 3DS making these very easily accessible to anyone with a number of devices.
More and more Disney characters will be released from all different Disney movies. You can even create your own virtual toy box with people online and offline depending on how you want to play. I can’t wait for the Disney princess figurines to come out! Sleeping Beauty was always my favorite for obvious reason such as blond hair, love of pink, and innate napping abilities.
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