The Future of Eyecare And RFID

You may have heard the term RFID before and now you might be thinking what does this have to do with eyecare? A lot as it happens.

RFID is ‘Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) is the use of radio waves to read and capture information stored on a tag attached to an object. A tag can be read from up to several feet away and does not need to be within direct line-of-sight of the reader to be tracked.

The reason I bring this up because an article came to my attention about an online eyewear company using RFID:

Mar 07, 2016—Norwegian online eyewear company Extra Optical is piloting an RFID-based shipping solution provided by Bring to automatically track every pair of glasses it ships to customers, and to trigger a notification to each customer when his or her shipment is about to be delivered to that person’s home or office….The system that Extra Optical is using consists of RFID labels on envelopes, readers installed at Posten distribution centers, and software provided by Consignor that links each parcel label’s unique ID number with the corresponding shipment and shares that data with Extra Optical. The software also forwards a message to the shipper indicating when the glasses will be delivered… (Source RFIF Journal

Other Optical Companies: 

Luxottica Group.., is using NFC technology to manage unsold glasses that are returned from customers in 27 European countries. The project enables the company’s after-sales department to trace the crediting, quality control, refurbishing and packaging activities of almost 2 million pairs of glasses annually. An NFC tag in the shape of a small badge with a lanyard is applied to each item, enabling the firm to read directly from a tablet, identify the glasses and record all subsequent activities. At RFID Journal LIVE Learn how the project has enabled Luxottica to automate identification and traceability that was previously carried out by paper forms and complex reporting activities. (Checkpoint Systems)

‘Altair has already employed MobileFrame’s RFID software in their distribution centers to pick and ship orders. Pleased with the system’s performance, Altair then decided to expand it to track all of its frames on consignment at optician offices around the world.’ (Secure id news)

Smart Labels are growing at an impressive rate of 20%+ per year as more companies implement the usage of them particularly in the retail sector. Better inventory and data management, better customer service, better consumer communication and improved sales plus better counterfeit identification.

What this means to eyecare professionals? Big chains and retailers both brick and mortar and online will become more efficient, saving money and costs. By better inventory management they will be able to buy and sell product that is profitable. By better data management, they will be able to target market more effectively.

When one looks at the future of retail, this is where it is going. We found this video by Digitact with Optic Touch technology.

OpticTouch with eGrab (RFID System for Optics) from Digitact on Vimeo.

While RFID has a long way to go, with many issues including privacy, it is a technology to keep an eye on. Eyecare professionals can start looking into this now.

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