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Comparison between RFID and Bar Codes

Comparison between RFID and Bar Codes

Go to the online APUS library or other professional journals, such as RFID Journal, and write a paper on
“What is the one most important comparison between RFID and bar codes this year? Explain with an

Comparison between RFID and Bar Codes

DFID and barcodes have been used in various business activities around the
world. DFID and barcodes technologies are highly used in logistics and inventory pros.
However, despite their differences being noticeable, it becomes challenging to choose one over
the other. DFID is a radio frequency, which uses waves to transmit information from tags to an
RFID reader.

On the other hand, bar coding uses scanners with a beam of light to “read” the
white and black lines of barcodes. The scanner has a sensor that creates signals from the
reflected light and decoders and translates the signals into text and sends it to a database or
computer. RFID and barcodes are similar in tracking stuff, and stored data on both kinds of tags
are easily retrievable using scanning devices, which enhances inventory-tracking workflow.
Therefore, when it comes to bar coding and RFID, both technologies may have
their flaws; however, the benefits prevail. The barcode is widely used and well established in the
retail industry. When you compare a barcode to RFID, it has its flaws because it needs to be seen
to be read and only one code can read at once. Besides, barcodes are prone to physical damages,
which is a significant challenge in the logistics and retail fields. Moreover, barcodes have limited
storage for only a 1D barcode as well as easily copied and reproduced.

On the contrary, RFID can quickly read many tags at once as compared to
barcodes, especially where time and cost is crucial to the company. RFID can hide and still read
tags saving time and cost. However, various software does not support RFID, and the tags are

substantially expensive compared to barcodes. Despite its flaws, RFID is available in many
formats and can be made robust in diverse application and environments, such as retail, logistics,
and warehouses. RFID tags use Gen2 v2 standards that give additional features like tag and
reader authentication. Therefore, it allows the solution to be applied against product
counterfeiting and provide services such as EAS function (Logistics Business, 2018).
The main comparison between RFID and barcoding is not readily identifiable
directly, as neither technology is worse or better. This is because they are different and have their
drawbacks and benefits. Bar codes are generally clearly understood because of their extended use
as well as many diverse solutions that support them. They are mainly used in integration and
software companies. Barcoding is a mature technology, and its implementation risk is low.
On the other hand, RFID is perceived as being new which it is not the truth, and
are difficult to use. RFID as compared to bar coding, give more exciting and new possibilities
because it can challenge current thinking and processes. RFID can be used in diverse areas, and
in logistics, it can provide the desired benefits by taking some lateral thinking on behalf of the
system integrator and service provider (Smith-Ditizio & Smith, 2018).

Barcodes are widely used in different industries. Besides, barcodes are widely
used because of their benefits such as increased data capacity and the ability to read code despite
damages. 2D codes such as the QR Code provide an omnidirectional reading. RFID is widely
used in the retail and logistics to assist employees, and companies realize their goals. This is
done to speed up inventory processes and asset management. RFID can also be used in the
process of vehicle tracking and authentication.


However, in comparison to RFID, barcodes are well known and established,
which may make companies miss the opportunities of RFID technology. It is expected that
industry will catch up to RFID just like barcodes. Thus, the industry must find the right hardware
and systems integration partner.



Logistics Business, (2018). Industry View: When to RFID and When to Barcode. AMCS

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