Comparative analysis of RFID and NFC chip systems – Case Identification

Presentation of the microchip

The RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) microchip is a 10 years old integrated circuit based on a passive technology. Is a conservation and transfer tag that allows a very restricted transfer of datas and which does not permit an upload of these datas during the lifetime of the animal.

These microchip are used to label consumer and industrial products by big industries to manage the logistics and the shoplifting.

Otherwise the NFC (Near Field Communication) microchip is an advanced technology easier to understand that allows people to to use their phone to be connected (thanks to a URL saved in the microchip) to their datas stored in a cloud. NFC chip is a technology revolution. One of its characteristics is its automacy: it is not necessary to open an app. It is just possible to approach a smartphone to the NFC chip and datas of the connected animal will appear immediately.

The chip is as big as a grain of rice, it is ICAR certified and it is easily insert subcutaneous thanks to a syringe.

Micro-chip reading system

The reading of the RFID chip is done by scanning it with a specific device reader that provides the code written into the chip.

The reading of the NFC chip is done by simply scanning/tapping on it using a a smart-phone (cellular) or a tablet that, without opening any peculiar app, will bring up the info associated to the relative identification code.

Principle of Operation

The RFID chip works alone. Each chip is unique and corresponds to a unique number. The number is composed of several digits (8, 10, 12, etc.).

The NFC chip works in direct connection with a database with software installed on a server. Each chip is unique.

Database Intelligence Mode

An application or chart (Excel type) tracking can be set up. Once a database has been created on the server, the administrator or any authorized person can only enter, modify, control or verify data information that has been allowed to by connecting directly to the server from a database. workstation where the application is installed. We must move. The information can be also obtained offline.

Once the specific software has been set up and a database lodged into the server, the administrator or any authorized person can access the database by connecting to the server with a smartphone (a cellular phone) or a tablet. No need to move wherever you are. The information is obtained in real time.

Conclusion (costs and benefits)

At first, the cost of the RFID chip seems cheaper compared to the NFC one. However, it should be remembered that RFID works alone as a memory support while the NFC is the access key to connect with the software associated. This system allows you to read, correct and verify any info on the database without peculiar and special devices. In fact, reading by scanning the NFC can be done by the widespread phone/tablet sold nowadays.

Therefore, we can say that the two systems (RFID, NFC) are completely different and forced to note the simplicity and availability of reading possibilities of the NFC technology; therefore, its wider applications.

In conclusion, it should be noted that in most of the countries, it is the RFID chip the one that is still used in the livestock sector, despite its limitations in terms of the modernization objectives of the sector, the economic and social requirements (Securing the livestock, permanent availability and reliability of information obtained in real time, etc…). If it was intrinsically only the chip price, the difference would be small. However, as previously mentioned, the NFC is considered as a component of a full integrated system. Therefore, the NFC system combines time savings, elimination or greatly reduced travel costs, usability, the ability to connect multiple people to the same server, the illimitate number of data recorded (while the RFID where info are stored into the chip itself are significantly limited), a response to the requirements of the standards of international standards, etc.