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Issue of February 2004 

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Industry giants are tagging RFID

RFID has generated tremendous interest with the recent announcement of Wal-Mart and the U.S. Department of Defense requiring its vendors to adopt RFID by 2005. All the major technology companies are planning RFID solutions and other inventory-tracking wares.

Microsoft for instance, has kicked off a new project dubbed Smarter Retailing Initiative, that it says will make it easier for companies to connect their legacy applications in the retail arena with their stores—and through Web services, with their customers. Microsoft has already signed on a number of partners and technology vendors to contribute to the project. It also recruited several retail chains to participate in the program. IBM, HP and Sun have similar plans to tap the retail segment.

While RFID has been around for decades, cost of the technology and lack of standards hampered its widespread adoption.

Speaking at the launch of its own RFID solution, Nandan M. Nilekani, President and CEO, Infosys said enterprises across verticals face many challenges in real-time visibility and tracking of physical movement of goods, assets and personnel.

"Our customers can now look to us to provide the cost reduction, improved customer service and streamlined operations with the launch of our RFID solution and expertise," said Nilekani.

Infosys is identifying pilots with clients based on strategy sessions on RFID technology, and how best it can be applied to business processes.

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