RFID Journal LIVE! 2009, the world's premier conference and exhibition focused on radio frequency identification and its many business applications, has unveiled the finalists for the 2009 RFID Journal Awards. The winners will be announced at RFID Journal LIVE!, which will be held in Orlando on Apr. 27-29.
"We had some very interesting submissions in each category this year, and the judging was closer than ever before, indicating the consistently high quality of the submissions," said Mark Roberti, founder and editor of RFID Journal. "RFID Journal LIVE! attendees are in for a real treat when they hear the winners present their stories live, on stage."
End-user companies were nominated in three categories:
Best RFID Implementation
* American Apparel: The retailer was selected for its RFID-based item-level tracking solution that improves the visibility of merchandise stocked on its sales floor and in its stockroom. The system allows staff members to count and replenish inventory on a consistent basis, while also reducing the amount of labor required for this process.
* Charles Voegele Trading AG: The European fashion retailer was picked for its use of one of the world's first end-to-end, item-level supply chain tracking solutions.
* The State of Hawaii's Department of Agriculture (DOA): Hawaii's DOA was selected for developing a system that can identify and pull contaminated products before they reach consumers.
Best Use of RFID in a Product or Service
* SPA Group: The Belgian race organizer deployed a system enabling it to mail Grand Prix tickets to fans that contain fewer errors, while also reducing counterfeiting and improving customers' race experience.
* Parkway Corp.: The parking management firm was selected for its vehicle identification system, which automated the process of managing vehicle access to the Philadelphia International Airport, thereby reducing errors and improving revenue collection.
* Vail Resorts: The leading North American ski resort operator was chosen for an RFID system that enhances the guest experience, reduces pass fraud and enables it to passively gather and aggregate behavioral data for improved customer segmentation.
Most Innovative Use of RFID
* Celebrity Big Brother: The UK reality TV show was selected for using an innovative system of tracking the movements of participants within the house in which the show is filmed. This enabled producers to gather statistical data that could be employed in the analysis of the housemates' movement, behavior and relationships, thereby adding an extra dimension to the television audience's viewer experience.
* Focus Magazine: The German publisher was chosen for utilizing an RFID system that enables the passive evaluation of reader behavior, without the need for test readers to perform any conscious action.
* Tomorrow's Mother: The maternity apparel company was picked for employing a system enabling it to monitor inventory on standalone displays, without requiring electrical power or an Ethernet connection.
In addition, ten technology providers were nominated for the Best in Show award, which will be given to the best new product exhibited at RFID Journal LIVE! 2009. The finalists are:
* AgileTag, Inc.: For its on-shelf monitoring system that combines active and passive technologies for easy, low-cost deployments.
* Alcatel-Lucent: For its Touchatag system, which is designed to connect connect the real and virtual worlds for interactive advertising and other applications.
* American RFID Solutions: For its iSTAR solution that enables iPhone users to locate a tagged object by its serial number, by proximity, within a user-defined area, or by some other meaningful filtering criteria.
* Franwell, Inc.: For a new wearable RFID interrogator that is easier to use and less disruptive to employees carrying out routine tasks.
* IDS Microchip AG: For its IDS-SL13A passive/semi-passive tag microchip, which is optimized for single-cell, battery-powered smart labels with sensor functionality.
* Intelligent Insites: For its Enterprise Visibility Platform that promotes an efficient, lean environment by providing a single system capable of locating individuals, equipment, inventoried supplies and more.
* ODIN Technologies: For its Blackbird smart container, a self-inventorying system that enables standard shipping containers to automatically capture passive RFID tag data on a scheduled basis, upon door closure or in response to a user command.
* Q-Track Corp.: For its Near-Field Electromagnetic Ranging (NFER) low-frequency (1 MHz), narrowband (less than 500 Hz), real-time location system (RTLS).
* Tego, Inc.: For its TegoTag XM 32-kilobyte tag and TegoView reader software, which allow end users to read and write more data on a tag, and to secure that information.
* UMP Raflatac and Blue Spark: For their jointly developed, battery-assisted, passive EPC Gen 2-compliant inlay, capable of battery-assisted read ranges of up to 50 meters (154 feet), and featuring 1024 bits of non-volatile memory, along with a "low battery" alarm.
* Zebra Technologies: For its RP4T mobile printer, the world's first mobile thermal-transfer RFID printing solution.
The RFID Journal Awards are given in recognition of excellence in the area of radio frequency identification. "Each year, we see more and more great implementations and exciting new products," Roberti said. "I'm pleased we are able to shine a light on some of the great things being done in the RFID industry."
RFID Journal LIVE! 2009, the seventh annual event produced by RFID Journal, will be held at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin in Orlando. This year's conference will feature eight industry-specific and how-to conference tracks, nine in-depth preconference seminars, fast-track CompTIA RFID+ training and certification, the RFID Journal Awards, and numerous technology exhibits and demonstrations conducted by leading technology firms. In addition, four co-located events have been designed to provide added value to attendees by enabling them to access additional education sessions.