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What Are RFID Tags and How Are They Used?

What Are RFID Tags and How Are They Used?

Jun 17,2022
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags are an essential part of everyday life, and the use of this technology continues to grow. Consider a label on a bottle of wine in a store designed to deter theft or a small device/sticker on a car windshield that allows free toll road use: these are all RFID tags.

While most RFID tags are used for merchandise or to track packages, they can also be used to help track pets or patients in hospital settings.

An RFID tag is a tracking system that uses radio frequency to search, identify, track, and communicate with items and people. Essentially, an RFID tag is a smart label that can store a range of information from serial numbers to short descriptions and even data pages. Some RFID tags include cryptographic security features for advanced verification and authentication. RFID tags are usually identified by their radio frequency: low frequency (LF), high frequency (HF), and ultra high frequency (UHF).

The LF system has a range between 30 and 300KHz with a read range up to 10cm. These systems are more commonly used in applications such as access control and livestock monitoring.

The HF system has a range between 3 and 30MHz and a read range from 10cm to 1m (3ft). These systems are typically used for e-tickets, payments, or user experience applications.

The UHF system has a range between 300MHz and 3GHz with a read range of up to 12m (39ft). These systems are most commonly used in retail inventory tracking, parking lots, access control, and asset management.

Passive vs Active RFID Tags

There are two types of RFID tags - passive and active. Passive RFID tags are the most common; they do not need to see the reader directly, but have a shorter read range, are smaller in size, and are lighter in weight.
Passive RFID tags are suitable for:

Supply chain and inventory management

Asset and people tracking


Industrial and manufacturing

Brand protection and anti-counterfeiting

Real-time positioning system (RTLS) using 3D orientation-insensitive design

Gate and perimeter access control

Pharmaceuticals and healthcare

Entertainment and travel

Apparel and retail

Active RFID tags are less common and require their own transmitter and power source. These labels tend to be bulkier, stronger, more durable, and more expensive. An example of an active RFID tag is a beacon for RTLS, continuous medical monitoring, or theme park attendance.

What is NFC Technology?

A subset of HF RFID, Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, connects the Internet of Things (IoT) and can be used for more complex and secure interactions. Communication between NFC tags and items can be bidirectional, making everyday objects smarter and more trustworthy. NFC is limited to HF Near Field Communication and only one NFC tag can be scanned at a time. NFC is very simple to use, and since most mobile devices are now NFC-enabled, no additional infrastructure is generally required to adopt the technology.

The above briefly introduce what RFID tags are and how they are used. If you want to know more or want to buy RFID tags, please contact us.

Yanzeo is a professional custom RFID products manufacturer. We always adhere to the strategic concept of intelligent technology, keep up with the pace of industry development, follow international standards, actively explore barcode RFID technology, customize exclusive communication solutions according to customer needs, realize customers' intelligent and diversified IoT identification needs, and then create transcendence for customers. value of value.
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