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RFID Based Mobiles: Next Generation Applications

Meenakshi Sharma Adil Siddiqui

Asst. Prof, E.C.E Dept B.Tech, 3rd yr
Inderprastha Engineering College, Ghaziabad Inderprastha Engineering College, Ghaziabad
Mkshi_sharma@rediffmail.com Ph: 91-9555737215

Abstract—The boom of RFID usage -especially in logistics-

has taken down the prices of RFID components and therefore
opened also possibilities for other business fields to benefit the
advantages of RFID. The technology for radio frequency
identification (RFID) enables data to be transmitted by a tiny
portable device, called a tag, which is read by an RFID reader
and processed according to the needs of a particular
application. It is only recently that the technology has begun to
take off in the mass market. RFID applications in mobile
phone business have not yet been deployed in other that small
scale, but the discussion around this topic has been really
started. Analysts predict that RFID will revolutionize areas of
industry, such as supply chain management and the retail Fig 1: RFID System
business, for example by reducing costs with better stock
management. As the components for RFID-systems - tags and The technology behind RFID uses inductive
readers - have become smaller and cheaper, the technology has coupling [3] to transfer data. Induction occurs when a
begun to take-off, in a variety of different areas This paper wire (or any other conductor of electricity) passes
focuses on the applications of RFID technology in mobile through a magnetic field, generating an electric current
telecommunication services.
Many experts see RFID as an enabler for ubiquitous
in the wire. It's similar to the principal of
computing - the integration of computation into the electromagnetism -- that passing an electric current
environment: any device, anytime, anywhere. Reservation through a coil of wire will generate a magnetic field --
could be as simple as holding your phone close (less than 20 only in reverse. An RFID chip has a coil of wire built
centimeters) to a poster or advertising billboard. RFID enabled into it. When an RFID equipped cell phone gets to
mobile phones could be a first step in this direction. The within a few centimeters of an RFID-equipped
combination of mobile phones and RFID technologies promises
great potential in the market for mobile telecommunication
payment station, which is generating a magnetic field
services, which is discussed in this paper. and also has a coil of wire inside, an electric current
jumps between the two coils of wire, signaling data-
Keywords- RFID, Tags, Mobile Payment, NFC, automated carrying, short-range radio waves to pass between the
massaging, information retrieval. two devices.


RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is a method
of identifying unique items using radio waves. [1],[2]. RFID technology is not yet really deployed in
Typical RFID systems are made up of 2 major mobile phone industry. There are few examples of
components: readers and tags. The reader, sometimes RFID technology adaptation in mobile phones. Nokia
called the interrogator, sends and receives RF data to has produced first mobile phone that has RFID reader
and from the tag via antennas. A reader may have build in the phone [4]. Nokia 5140 phone has RFID
multiple antennas that are responsible for sending and reader possibility through removable RFID covers.
receiving the radio waves. The tag, or transponder, is Nokia has also published RFID kit that enable user to
made up of the microchip that stores the data, an design simple applications for RFID usage [4].RFID
antenna, and a carrier to which the chip and antenna are has many potential applications that could be integrated
to the mobile phones. The applications©2010
may IEEE
good, but before those will be used commonly there
will be a long journey.
of a movie when the user reads an RFID tag that is attached
to the movie poster. This is a promising area of RFID
application, but before it can be reality two things are needed.
First of all the relatively big amount of mobile phones has to
be equipped with RFID readers and secondly the big amount
of products would need to attached with right kind of RFID
tags. Without these two things are there is no possibility to
reach the critical mass and without the critical mass there are
no major business opportunities.
Once the RFID tags become cheap, we can literally
attach them to as many items as possible. As a result, just by
bringing mobile devices near to a RFID tagged object, we
can quickly and easily download information held by that
Figure 3: Nokia 5140 with RFID covers. [4] object and view it via mobile phone’s display screen. For
example one can:
III. RFID EQUIPPED MOBILES, WORKING OUT THE  download information about a particular location
TECHNOLOGY by scanning RFID tagged sign posts, and
The RFID reader is installed in a mobile device such as a landmarks
cell phone [5]. This is a fundamentally new approach  download bus routes by scanning RFID tagged
compared to most existing RFID applications. There, the Buses
readers are considered to be stationary while the tags are  download prices of RFID tagged merchandise sold
considered to be mobile. This would now change. The
implementation of RFID in mobile telecommunications at stores, published in catalogs for comparing
services would lead to a scenario where the tags are shops
stationary and readers (that are integrated in the cell-phone)  download movies, music, trailers, show timings,
become mobile. There would also be applications where the and theater locations by scanning RFID tagged
mobile phone can be both, tag and reader at the same time. movie posters, music CDs, etc.
Integrating RFID capabilities into mobile devices extends  download current menu being served at a
the use of RFID technology beyond the supply chain
management etc. into areas like customer service, marketing
particular restaurant by scanning its RFID tag,
or brand management. RFID based mobile published in a restaurants catalog
telecommunications will play an important role in bridging make a quick call or send an instant message by
offline objects with information accessible on data-networks. scanning RFID tagged photographs, business cards,
Services that use the information stored on RFID tags and address books, etc.
communicate with peer objects will help to create an
environment of “smart objects”. Mobile phones are an V. SOME OF THE MORE IMPORTANT FUTURISTIC
excellent platform for user communication with such smart APPLICATIONS ARE DISCUSSED HEREIN
The use of RFID technologies in mobile communication A. Mobile Payment
undoubtedly has a promising future. As already mentioned Mobile phone – equipped with RFID reader or tag – can
Nokia has developed the first RFID-enabled cell phone in be also used for device for paying goods or services.
cooperation with Verisign.[4] Customer could pay his travel trip, food or product with
This accessory allows the user to easily launch services simply reading the RFID tag and getting confirmation of
and conveniently access phone functions simply by touching purchase trough e.g. SMS. Mobile RFID payment
the phone to an RFID tag. The phone accesses the RFID tag application has been launched in Japan by Japanese operator
data when an RFID reader emits a short-range radio signal DoCoMo [7]. User can use his or her mobile phone as
that powers a microchip on the tag, allowing the ID electronic wallet and pay his or her products and services
information and other stored data to be read. with it. There are 39 companies -including McDonalds and
Japan railroads- offering their products or services trough
A new generation of active tags called "Dice" was RFID payment and product identification may be the
presented by YRP Ubiquitous Networking Labs in April most promising areas of RFID applications in personal
2005[6]. They are about 15mm x 15mm x 15mm and mobile phones, but for business usage there are existing
according to the manufacturer, the battery will last for 2 already beneficial RFID solutions. In all businesses where
years and 3 months if the tag communicates every 5 the personnel of a company have to travel around the field,
minutes!!!!! Efforts are on to reduce the cost of such a device through beforehand known points, it is possible to use the
to less than 3 cents. With this soon going to become a reality RFID technology as method for reporting and operating tool.
an RFID equipped cell phone could provide a free preview All service personnel could use their own mobile phones to
report their service time and other data directly to the servers Information retrieval via RFID enabled mobile phones
by just simply reading RFID tag from the repaired item. E.g. could also be used for advertisements.
elevator, base station or coffee machine service personnel Posters or paper-copies of advertisements could carry a
would have direct reporting tool integrated to their mobile small RFID-tag. Anybody interested in more information on
phones. Think about the situation where coffee automata the advertised product or event would just have to hold his
service person receives a service request with SMS to his or mobile phone close to the tag. The information would then
her personal mobile phone. After fulfilling the task he or she again be retrieved from a database.
would just read the RFID tag – containing information what The delivered information could also be multimedia-
has been done and when- from the coffee machine and the content: Thus the combination of RFID and mobile
data would be transferred directly e.g. to the invoicing data telecommunications provides an interesting new approach to
bases. brand management and special promotions that could be
Nokia presents some use cases in their web pages, which attractive to companies and (tech-savvy) customers alike.
has been developed around RFID [4]. These applications are Countries like Japan are undertaking a larger number of
based on the idea that user touches the RFID tag with mobile projects on enhancing food-safety with mobile technologies.
phone, containing RFID reader, and the phone will connect Many of these projects use RFID technologies. One
to needed place to execute needed operation. Nokia promotes particular project is the development of “Integrated Food
these applications as “Touch and Browse”, “Touch and Traceability Systems” [8] that utilize Ubiquitous ID
Record” and “Touch and Call” [4]. These applications do Technology. A field trial took place in February and March
many things from browsing the internet to connecting to 2005 at the Mitsukoshi Department store in Nihonbashi,
closest restaurant, but there is one common thing in them. Tokyo (Japan)120 and the Keikyu Store, Noukendai Branch,
These applications all use some other service to deliver value Yokohama (Japan). Customers could get information on the
to the customer. The applications use e.g. GSM, MMS or product history of certain pieces of tagged fruit and meat.
internet browsing services.
The access control could be also partly integrated to C. Data transmission
mobile phone [5]. People would not need to carry different Another application possibility is the transmission of data
kind of keys with them if the RFID tags would be integrated from a tagged item to a central database over the mobile
to their mobile phones. This would benefit specially persons network. This could be used e.g. for security guards to prove
who are moving in many different premises, e.g. security that they visited certain sites. The location and a valid
guards and maintenance personnel. timestamp would be transferred to a database as a proof that
Suppose while walking down the street, you see a poster work has been done accurately. The same concept of data
for a movie you want to see. By pointing your phone at the transmission could also be used for reading e.g. electricity
poster, you will be connected to a website, buy the ticket and meters. Service staff would read a tag attached to a meter and
be charged through the credit card information stored in your then automatically transfer the meter readings via the phone.
smart phone!!!!!! This example shows the use of RFID in Later, the transmitted information will be used for the
mobile telecommunication networks. pricing.
B. Information retrieval[1] D. Automated messaging
Here, the mobile phone is equipped with an RFID-reader Automated messages could be generated whenever a
and aids to retrieval additional information on tagged items. mobile phone comes near a tag. This could be used e.g. in a
The information would be stored in a database, which is system to set up an attendance control system. A single
accessed via the mobile network. Consumers could use this mobile phone could be used to report presence in the office,
feature for example in supermarkets to obtain additional a construction site, a field office etc.
information on products, e.g. if they contain allergens etc. Another application would be automated progress reports
Comparing prices with on-line services such as Froogle111 back to office, e.g. for service technicians. They could easily
right in the shopping mall would also be easy with an RFID- report on their work done by an automated message when
equipped mobile phone. they move their phone close to a tag on the serviced machine.
The RFID phone might be used by a engineer in the field
E. Voice services
checking a meter on a gas pipeline or other industrial
equipment. The engineer would scan the tag attached to a Voice services are also an attractive field for using RFID
meter to identify which meter was being read. The phone- technologies in mobile phones. One possible application in
reader would record the time of the read, and then the this scenario are visual phone directories. This could e.g. be
engineer could key in the meter reading into the phone using used at the reception desk of companies with a display of
the buttons on the phone. The data could be stored in the pictures of all the persons working in the company. A mobile
phone and downloaded to a PC via an infrared connection. phone in proximity to a tag attached to the photo would then
The application scenario would also be interesting for initiate a call to the respective person. This would help to
target-groups like service technicians (to obtain additional simplify making phone calls for persons with physical
information on items to be serviced) or machine operators (to limitations, for children, or the elderly.
obtain new work instructions for a particular machine).
F. Diagnostic Sensors competitive advantage to those that endorse it first. However,
there are still some economic and standardization issues that
need to be addressed before the technology sees wide
acceptance. Mobile enterprise applications are going to be
the first beachhead of RFID enabled cell phones followed by
consumer applications in the long term.
Word from research firms is that by 2009 half of all cell
phones will be able to read RFID tags.
So now your cell phone would act as your movie tickets,
car keys, credit cards and probably a host of other options.
Next time you would feel like watching a movie you could
just pick up your phone and buy one and when you reach the
hall you will be granted access when the reader confirms the
details of the tickets on the tag inside the phone.
RFID has huge potential in enabling growth of mobile
Figure 4: RFID can be used in diagnostic sensing services, but other real killer applications will have to wait
Gentag [9] the leader in wireless sensor technology, is for longer time. The break through of RFID enabled mobile
developing a line of medical RFID patches to enable services will require vide co-operation from mobile phone
physicians and patients to monitor their health wirelessly. manufacturers, operators and mobile service provides. It is
They anticipate that this new technology will simultaneously unlikely that mobile phone users would be willing to pay
decrease the cost of health care while drastically increasing extra for RFID readers in their mobile phones, before there
patient safety. are real cases where they can us it.
By combining RFID cell phones and RFID sensors with This means that manufacturers, operators and service
cellular networks or the Internet, the consumer will be providers will have to finance this break through. I consider
empowered to read any RFID sensor tag anywhere for this to be the biggest obstacle between mobile RFID success
almost any application. and failure.
A particular focus area for Gentag using RFID cell
phones are diagnostic applications. RFID sensors can be REFERENCES
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RFID and cellular technologies is a promising
combination that can increase productivity and give a