WE’LL help you decide which solution is right for your application
Barcode-based data collection systems allow you to scan a label to read a fixed piece of information associated with the barcode. This type of identification can provide a huge jump in efficiency and accuracy compared to manual, paper-based methods. However, workers can only scan one label at a time, and they have to be able to see the label in order to scan it. The data available is also fairly limited. For example, in asset tracking solutions a barcode scan will only tell you that you have located a product type, not necessarily a specific item.
RFID (radio frequency identification) uses radio tags to track and identify goods. RFID tags can hold more information (serial numbers, owner identification, original order number, manufacturer, dates, etc.), and don’t require line of sight for scanning. RFID readers can also read dozens of items at once, which can greatly speed activities like inventory or asset counting. RFID can provide another exponential leap in both efficiency and accuracy, since scanning requires less labor. However, RFID system treat each item uniquely and these systems generate increased amounts of item-level data. To successfully use RFID, you have to have a software system in place that can filter and manage all of the available data. RFID is also a more expensive option in tags and readers, so a careful careful return on investment analysis will be required.
omniQ has helped many clients implement RFID solutions, including our own RFID Tray Tracking solution for returnable assets. This solution has helped our customers accurately ensure the right product was going on the right trucks to the right locations, track route deliveries, reduce asset loss, and helped improve perishable inventory management.
The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) offers a way to improve product visibility outside the four walls of the enterprise, as well as within a facility. While RFID plays a role in the IIoT architecture, most IIoT solutions involve a more expensive and complex combination of sensors, asset intelligence, and tracking data that can provide even more data on vibration, temperature, equipment performance, GPS, and other information. With the proper infrastructure, it is possible to track historical data specific to an item and its transport experience. For example, you could track a pallet and record its temperature range and whether or not it has been dropped. You can remotely track how often a piece of equipment has been used and if it is due for service. The IIoT further expands the amount of data available to companies, and increase the complexity of the data management requirements and analytics.
Trust the Experts at omniQ for Advice on the Best Solution
omniQ can help you match the right data collection to your application, and provide guidance to design a data management solution that will prevent your organization from being overwhelmed with too much unnecessary data. omniQ provides total solutions, combining the right hardware and software to create a system that is customized to your own business needs.
Learn more about how omniQ helped to create a yard management system for a leading online used car retailer that combined mobile computers and printer, wireless routers, tablet devices, and RFID infrastructure hardware that is helping to track hundreds of thousands of vehicles across the U.S.