TI first to ship Gen 2 RFID to Wal-Mart
Gen 2 RFID is a high-volume technology standard that is expected to be ratified soon by the International Standards Organization as the first global RFID standard to become the basis of a large-scale RFID implementation. TI's Gen 2 chips were shipped on cases and pallets of various calculators by its Educational & Productivity Solutions business unit. Essentially, TI's E&PS unit leapfrogged earlier Gen 1 RFID technology, which Wal-Mart hopes to phase out this year. "TI is ahead of the curve with Gen 2 adoption, and we commend them on being the first to begin Gen 2 tagging of cases and pallets in support of Wal-Mart's RFID expansion plans in 2006," said Simon Langford, Wal-Mart's RFID strategy manager, in a statement. Dallas, Texas-based TI began production of Gen 2 inlays and straps, which are components of RFID tags, in July 2005. In early December, the company said it would buy an undisclosed volume of RFID silicon from rival Impinj Inc to fill the gap before it begins production of its own Gen 2 silicon sometime this year.