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ABI Research Sees RFID Helping Airlines Track Assets
In North America, those big utility dollies used at airports, the ones that are pulled around by little tractors, cost about $5000 each. There are many thousands of them in airports around the continent. And believe it or not, airlines “lose” them frequently — through carelessness, theft, or “borrowing” by other airlines. Dedicating resources to locate them — humans and machines tied up for hours — can quickly become a serious expense. “If you can track them electronically,” says ABI Research analyst Christopher Lopez, “you can save a lot of money and use staff more productively.” Some airlines — American, Delta, JetBlue and others — are getting the message and are starting to employ an array of electronic techniques to keep track of their rolling assets. They are using GPS, RFID and hybrid systems in a variety of configurations. Baggage tracking is another obvious application for RFID in this market and frequent travelers to Asia will be glad to learn that Hong Kong airport now tags every piece of luggage passing through it. Port efficiency is another growth area. Delays in unloading cargoes mean steeply rising costs as shipping arrangements are changed on the fly. Asset tracking through RFID creates the opportunity to keep those unnecessary costs to a minimum. A new ABI Research study, “The RFID Transportation Market,” presents an in-depth analysis of end-users’ strategies and their willingness to enter the RFID transportation market. Detailed forecasts illustrate market trends. Sub-vertical markets such as railroads, airports, ports and marinas are also covered in detail with respect to their impact on the RFID market and the potential for hybrid technology systems.