What is

What is RFID?

RFID, which stands for Radio Frequency Identification, is a technology system that can identify an object using radio waves. It was first used during WWII to identify planes as friend or foe and now it is being used to improve efficiency in warehouses around the world.

The RFID reader transmits a radio signal with an integrated or external antenna and tags that are located on each object receive the signal and transmit the data they contain back to the reader. Compared to barcode systems, this enables significantly higher speed, accuracy and data availability.

RFID Capabilities

read hundreds of tags in seconds

No need for line of sight

extreme durability

holds more data than barcodes

Read Range up to 15 metres

Tags can be rewritten

Types of RFID

RFID technology comes in a wide range of varieties for different real-life applications. 

Low Frequency

Low Frequency RFID

30 - 300 kHZ

Has a read range of contact to 10 cm and is used for access fobs, tracking animals, and applications with a lot of liquids and metals.

High Frequency

13.56 MHZ

Has a read range of contact to 30 cm and is used mostly for consumer purposes such as ID cards, library books and NFC technology found in phones.

Ultra high Frequency


30 - 300 MHZ

Warehouses almost always use Ultra High Frequency (UHF) RFID for inventory and asset management. It has a much longer read range, which can extend to up to 150 m.

Active vs. Passive RFID

RFID tags are small chips that are placed on the asset or product you want to track. They come in two different types: passive and active.

Passive RFID tags get their power from electromagnetic energy transmitted by the RFID reader. In Europe, it runs on a frequency of 865-868 MHz with a read range of near contact to 25 meters. It is often used in supply chain tracking, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, electronic tolling, race timing, inventory tracking and asset tracking.

Active RFID tags have their own battery and transmit their own signals. It runs on a frequency of 433 MHz or 2.45 GHz and has a read range of 30-300 m. The tags are more expensive, so it is normally used for vehicle tracking, auto manufacturing, mining, construction and tracking valuable assets.

Passive rfid

Passive RFID

Read range: 0-25 m

Active rfid

Active RFID

Read range: 30-300 m

What's next?

Now that you’ve gained an understanding of how RFID works and what it can do for you, see what benefits RFID can have for your business.

This 12-page guide explains how RFID works and how it can benefit your business. Request your copy today, completely FREE!