Are RFID vendors doing enough to promote the technology?

If you believe the old saw that a rising tide lifts all boats, why do vendors in a market segment with lots of room for growth spend so much time touting their own products, and not enough time promoting the technology itself? That's the question that RFID Journal editor Mark Roberti poses about real-time location systems (RLTS) in healthcare after watching the CEOs of two competing vendors each use the majority of their allotted speaking time at a recent conference to shill for their own products. "The result was that the end users in the audience were at a loss as to which system--if either--could deliver business benefits," Roberti writes.

"But why is it that a technology that can deliver so much benefit to companies, consumers and society as a whole is receiving so little attention?" he asks. "The answer, in part, is that the RFID industry is selling itself short."

Roberti recommends that RFID vendors spend less time with self-congratulatory rhetoric, and more time convincing potential customers of the operational benefits of the actual technology. "The reality is that no RFID system will do everything you want it to, and some vendors have oversold the technology. But if you are looking to track assets, a reliable systems integrator can help you choose the proper technology; most active systems will work over longer distances, and passive tags over shorter distances. The technology choices are not that difficult. Heck, call me up and I'll help you choose the right technology if you don't trust the vendors," he writes.

To read more:
- click through to this RFID Journal column