Socket Communications today announced the release of the CompactFlash (CF) RFID Reader-Scan Card Series 6. An industry first, the scanner combines RFID and barcode scanning technology in a single device to provide for data collection implementations requiring both technologies. Of course, there are those conspirists that claim RFIDs are the "mark of the beast".
In any event, St. Clair Hospital implemented a pilot of the dual function scanner which they claim has further improved the effectiveness of its 5-Rights Medication Verification solution, helping the organization increase staff productivity and save lives.
The 5-Rights Medication Verification solution at St.Clair uses Wi-Fi enabled wireless Pocket PCs along with the CF RFID Reader-Scan Card Series 6, ensuring the right patient is receiving the right medication and dose via the right route of administration at the right time. The nursing staff at St.Clair are scanning the patients quickly and easily via RFID while continuing to use the more cost effective barcode scanning for medication verification. The announcement is shown below.
Socket Communications Delivers Industry First CF RFID Reader-Scan Card with Combined Bar Code and RFID Technology
Unique Multi-Functional Device Supports Both Technologies with a Single Plug-In Accessory for Pocket PC-Based Applications
NEWARK, CA September 6, 2005 - Socket Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCKT), an innovative provider of mobile productivity products, today announced the availability of the CF RFID Reader-Scan Card Series 6. Designed for Pocket PCs or other mobile devices running Windows Mobile software, the CF RFID Reader-Scan Card is an industry first, and combines both RFID and bar code technology within the same CF housing, enabling users to scan bar codes and read/write to high frequency (13.56MHz) RFID tags with a single, affordable mobile device.
³By 2010, the RFID technology market is expected to triple from what it is today,² said Peter Phillips, vice president of marketing at Socket Communications. ³Both bar code and RFID technologies will co-exist for several years to come and the CF RFID Reader-Scan Card offers an easy solution where both bar codes and RFID tags are used. This truly unique multi-function device is backed by Socket¹s reputation for reliable, easy-to-use energy efficient products that increase the productivity of mobile workers.²
To meet the rapidly growing demand for the use of RFID technology as a replacement of and/or supplement to bar codes, the Socket CF RFID Reader-Scan Card combines the functions of Socket¹s CF Scan Card for bar codes and the CF RFID Reader Card. Unlike large, bulky, ruggedized expensive data collection devices from other auto ID vendors, the CF RFID Reader-Scan Card scans linear bar codes and reads and writes to high frequency
(13.56MHz) RFID tags, enabling users to support both technologies with a single plug-in accessory for Pocket PC-based applications. Dual functionality is supported by SocketScan keyboard wedge software, which sends the RFID tag and/or bar code data to any Windows application as virtual keystrokes. The product is ideally suited for data collection implementations requiring both technologies, or for companies seeking ways to future-proof solutions with a migration path from bar codes to RFID.
³At St. Clair Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA, Socket¹s bar code scanners have done a great job to significantly reduce medication errors, streamline workflow and improve patient safety over the past eighteen months,² said Tom Ague, executive vice president and chief operating officer at St. Clair Hospital. ³To maximize the effectiveness of our VeriScan medication verification system, we wanted to utilize the re-usable read/write capabilities of RFID to improve patient and nurse identification. The nurse now logs into the VeriScan application more rapidly by using the RFID tag on her ID badge to authenticate. With RFID on the patient wristband, the nurse scans the patient without needing a direct line of sight to the bar code.
With the same device, the medication¹s bar code is then scanned to ensure the right patient is receiving the right medication and dose via the right route of administration at the right time. Bar codes aren¹t going away since it is not yet cost-effective to use RFID tags on packaging for consumables such as medications. We see the dual-scanning capability of Socket¹s CF RFID Reader-Scan Card as a very effective approach.²
The CF RFID Reader-Scan Card is available with either a Class 1 laser (model
6M) that is extremely safe for patient care applications or a more powerful Class 2 laser (model 6P) for more demanding scanning requirements. A single software developer¹s kit (SDK) supports all Socket Auto ID products, making it easy for developers to incorporate support for any and all products in their applications, and allows end users to use the Socket Auto ID product that best addresses their needs.
Socket¹s CF RFID Reader-Scan Card Series 6 is supported on Pocket PC 2003 (Windows Mobile) and soon to be released Windows Mobile 5.0.
Pricing and Availability
Socket¹s CF RFID Reader-Scan Card Series 6 will be available September 12,
2005 through Socket¹s worldwide distribution channels with an MSRP of $729 (version 6M) and $799 (version 6P).
About Socket Communications
Socket Communications (NASDAQ: SCKT) develops and distributes a broad range of data collection and network connectivity products for mobile devices such as PDA¹s, Smartphones and tablet notebooks. Working collaboratively with mobile solutions from leading Strategic Vertical Integrators, world-class 3rd party software developers and OEM's, Socket's products are proven to drive operational efficiencies, increase mobile workforce productivity, boost corporate performance and improve customer satisfaction. Socket is headquartered in Newark, California and can be reached at 510-744-2700 or www.socketcom.com.