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Perfect ID: Dual Frequency RFID Tags Feature NFC and RAIN RFID

  • Abhishek Shukla
  • Dec 01, 2023
  • RFID
RFID News: Dual Frequency RFID Tags with NFC and RAIN RFID

UHF RFID has been the go-to choice for retailers and other business owners with large warehouses to manage and keep track of their assets. It is primarily because RAIN RFID tags (UHF Passive RFID tags) cost less and offer a great read range, up to 15m in appropriate conditions. UHF RFID tags, the passive ones, cost INR 3-5 (4-5 US cents) now, far less than what the cost was a few years ago, going up to 40-50 cents (INR 30-35) per tag. 

However, the cost is not the only factor behind the popularity of RAIN RFID tags. UHF RFID tags are also compatible with most RFID reader antennas and software systems that use RFID for data collection and business process optimization. 

NFC is another popular technology, basically high frequency 13.56MHz wireless specification which is now found in smartphones. 

So what does this mean for RFID design and manufacturing companies? Well, it is the perfect chance to create dual-frequency RFID tags that feature both, UHF RFID and NFC or HF RFID frequency on a single RFID tag, allowing anyone with a smartphone to read that RFID tag and get the information on their smartphone. Perfect ID offers PID-dual frequency (RAIN and NFC) RFID label with the latest EM4425 chip which offers both, RAIN (UHF) and NFC functionalities, integrated with a single chip.

What is a Dual Frequency RFID Tag?

A dual-frequency RFID tag features dual working frequency, typically HF and UHF, designed with either two ICs (integrated circuits), and two separate antennas, or with one specialized IC with two separate antenna designs. 

So, what this means? Well, a dual-frequency RFID tag design supports both popular RFID frequency ranges, the UHF (860-960 MHz) and the HF (13.56 MHz). And since smartphones nowadays also support the NFC feature, one can read an RFID tag with a smartphone, without needing a costly RFID reader. 

A concept, Dual frequency RFID tags have been known for years but dual frequency microchip design is a new concept, developed around 2015 and it has also popularized dual-frequency RFID tags. 

Earlier HID Global, used to make smartcards that supported two separate inlays, with distinct working frequency options. Since smartcards have a larger form factor, it is easy to use two separate RFID inlays (RFID inlays are basically an IC and an antenna together) making one RFID tag. Now Perfect ID, a market leading RFID manufacturer in India designs and manufactures the dual frequency RFID tags using EM4425 integrated circuits, using UHF and HF frequency on a single chip. These tags can be purchased from Perfect ID official website and EnCStore.com.

Reading an RFID Tag with a Smartphone

With rising smartphone penetration and with the increasingly popular tech-savvy lifestyle where we use smartphones for smart homes, digital payments, access control, etc. with IoT technologies such as BLE, NFC, RFID, and QR codes, having more ways to collect data and get insights on things is crucial.

But what can we do, being able to scan and read an RFID tag with our smartphones?

The foremost benefit of using a smartphone to read an RFID tag with dual frequency is being able to ascertain the authenticity of products we purchase, as an anti-counterfeiting measure.

For businesses, dual-frequency RFID tags provide benefits in terms of supply chain and logistics management, inventory control, asset tracking, in-store management, etc. while dual-frequency RFID tags help customers with anti-counterfeiting, allowing them to ascertain that the product they are getting is actually from the same authentic brand. 

For alcohol businesses that sell wines and other premium alcohols, the use of dual-frequency RFID tags provides huge benefits and ensures that customers always get the authentic product. They can embed the dual frequency label on the product packaging and track the product throughout the store and inventory, keeping tabs on stock, most selling products, etc. as well as ensure that customers always trust the brand and never get cheated through counterfeiting, which is a huge problem in this business. 

Working of dual Frequency RFID Tags

As I mentioned, keeping aside the cost factor, dual-frequency RFID tags are great for businesses as well as consumers. While UHF RFID tags allow only businesses to read the RFID tag attached to the products and supply packages, the use of NFC frequency (HF, 13.56 MHz) in dual frequency RFID tags allows consumers to interact with the product as well. 

In dual-frequency RFID tags, the UHF frequency allows for a read range of up to 15m while HF frequency provides a read range of up to 100 cm. 

The working of a dual-frequency RFID tag is pretty similar to the working of a single-frequency RAIN RFID tag barring the added advantage of HF frequency reading. When an RFID reader interrogates the RFID-tagged product, the tag antenna captures the RF signal and powers the integrated circuit. The tag sends the encoded data in the form of Radio Waves for the reader to decode. 

The use of two inlays, which means two ICs and two separate antennas, also ensures that the tag is effectively read by an RFID reader, as in a smart card, which is used for access control, ticketing, digital payments, and identification purposes.

To conclude, dual-frequency RFID tags are sure a bit costly but provide great benefits. This advancement in RFID technology allows consumers to interact with the product and helps with anti-counterfeiting measures in healthcare, retail, the alcohol industry, food retail, and fashion amongst others. 

Disclaimer: The information presented here is for general information purposes only and true to best of our understanding. Users are requested to use any information as per their own understanding and knowledge. Before using any of the information, please refer to our Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.


  • Created on Dec 01, 2023
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