Tag Archives: rfid


Strongbow Has Prototyped the World’s First Digital Bottle Top

Following a huge hype around the first-ever digital and programmable Ballantine’s t-shirts, another popular alcohol brand is pioneering the digital future of ordinary things.

UK’s much-loved cider Strongbow together with Work Club, the London-based digital agency, which, by the way, was behind tShirtOS campaign, too, for two months has been promoting a new truly innovative project— first digitally enabled bottle tops StartCap, based on an RFID technology.

When a special StartCap bottle top is opened, the RFID tag is exposed from under the foil, which sends a signal to the reader, which, in its turn, recognizes the bottle’s chip and triggers the central computer in the network to activate the appropriate power switch. This is how reaction occurs: by opening the bottle one literally can empower different things to start remotely.

Photo: StartCap top for a Strongbow bottle

Pic: the diagram explains how StartCap technically works

The StartCap prototype was first tested on Strongbow Gold’s bottles back in September in a nice summer bar in Budapest, Hungary. The brand’s team then rigged the place with RFID sensors that would activate various things to start, like the lighting, music etc. Watch how it happened:

The most promising fact about the StartCap prototype is that it can be technically used to trigger anything, so the areas of application vary.

If you have any ideas or comments on the first digital bottle top StartCap, please share your thoughts on Strongbow’s Facebook page or you can learn more about the technical side of things on their blog here.


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Never lose a sock again with RFID-chipped socks

Definitely helpful when attempting to locate the sock the dryer supposedly ate, socks with RFID chips brings a digital spin to laundry.

Detailed on the Blacksocks site, the clothing company has added a radio ID tag to a line of socks that allows consumers to keep track of the footwear within the bedroom or when being washed. The Swiss company attached the tag at the top of the socks and it can be scanned with the included RFID reader. Shaped like a small garage door remote control, the RFID reader communicates with an iPhone over Bluetooth in order to transmit specific information about the sock. Within the Blacksocks application, the user will be able to match up the same two socks over and over in addition to tracking data like the amount of times that the sock has been washed or the original production date of each individual sock.

blacksocks-rfid-readerHowever, anyone can download the iPhone application in order to use the camera tool to measure the black level of their current socks. Using the iPhone camera, the application measures the black level on the image and offers a recommendation regarding the purchase of newer socks. The camera also takes a light reading on a white surface in order to calibrate the application for the room’s lighting.

Regarding keeping track of socks with the application, the app allows the user to pair socks together. If a sock is destroyed or fades after repeated washing, it can be paired with another tagged sock using the app.

Called the Plus+ socks, the radio ID tag looks like a small button on the outside of each sock. The socks are mostly made out of Peruvian pima cotton and basically look like a standard dress sock.

However, the socks are definitely on the expensive side. Blacksocks sells 10 pairs of RFID-tagged socks in three different sizes along with the RFID reader for a steep price of $189. In addition, replacement Plus+ socks can be purchased in 10-pair allotments without the RFID reader for $120.

via DigitalTrends

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At Brazilian retailer, RFID tracks merchandise from manufacturer to customer

Brazilian retailer Memove has recently started using RFID to track and control inventory throughout the supply chain.

Over the years we’ve seen how RFID technnology can be put to imaginative use, applied to everything from music festivals to eco-grave tracking to the feeding of cats. The latest spotting was at Brazilian fashion store Memove, where RFID was recently installed to track and control inventory throughout the supply chain.

Memove’s clothing manufacturers in Brazil, China and elsewhere begin by sewing an EPC Gen 2 passive RFID label into each item, according to a report in RFID Journal. With that in place, items are carefully tracked as they make their way to the distribution center and then the store, their arrival at which automatically updates the store’s inventory system. Also on hand at each store is an RFID-enabled trolley that need only be rolled through the aisles to update inventory in minutes. Dressing rooms are connected as well so as to track how many items enter and leave each stall. Shoppers, meanwhile, can check themselves out securely by placing all their items in a dedicated RFID-enabled basket, which calculates the total price. Once the customer has paid by debit or credit card at the POS terminal, the basket automatically updates inventory and erases each RFID label’s encoded ID number so that alarms won’t sound as the shopper exits the store. In the event the consumer later returns an item, RFID codes can be reprogrammed — but only if the tag hasn’t yet been washed. If it has, the tag can’t be re-encoded and the store refuses the return.

Full Article @ SW

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