Pros and cons of different types of RFID chips

Pros and cons of different types of RFID chips


Work clothes and textiles are often labeled with a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) chip. These chips, which are often sewn into in a hem or waistband of a garment, are of great benefit to you as a customer. Benefits include reduced garment loss, automatic orders and increased delivery reliability. There are different chip types and they have different characteristics. In general, you can say that:

  • Lower frequency chips have slower read speed, but are less sensitive to interference from liquid and metal
  • Higher frequency chips have faster read speeds, but are more sensitive to interference

Low frequency (LF)

This was the first chip technology to be used. With this type of chip, you can only read one article at a time (single read) and the reading distance is short, only a few centimeters. The readings are also relatively slow. This solution can be used where it is sufficient to read only one item at a time.

High Frequency (HF)

The next step in chip development meant that several textiles could be read simultaneously (multi read). The reading distance is slightly longer (a few decimeters) which makes it possible to read all of the bundles of garments, e.g. on conveyor belts or when carts are packed to customers. HF generally has good read precision. For example, there is very high accuracy in inventory and when handing out textiles.

Ultra High Frequency (UHF)

UHF is designed for solutions where there is a need to read a lot of products at the same time, e.g. a whole cart or pallet of items. The chip is also available in flat varieties that work well for use on sheets and other flat goods. You also have a significantly longer reading distance (several meters), which increases the risk of reading the “wrong” textiles. It can be said that the type of reading given by this technology provides opportunities for efficient management, but at the price of a certain level of read accuracy.

/ Petter Nilsson

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