China has about 150 out of the 1000 RFID suppliers in the world. About 100 of them make RFID tags, increasingly by printing the antennas as UHF versions become more popular and the Hana Label process of printing HF antennas reel to reel directly onto the paper feedstock leads to yet more orders at the ten million level, following the student rail pass. Read the new report HF RFID - The Great Leap Forward.
The Chinese are anxious to leapfrog the foreign competition in RFID and they are trialling the U-Code alternative to EPC as something lower cost, simpler and more likely to have printed logic, not just antennas.
IDTechEx recently researched the 100 largest RFID hardware manufacturers, finding that 37 percent of them are in China. This is no surprise because 40 percent of the global market for RFID in 2007 was in China. Indeed, in 2007, the second largest number of projects entered into the IDTechEx RFID Knowledgebase in the year were from China up from number three the year before and number ten in the year before that. Despite China having a few very large schemes creating most of its market, the Chinese projects still represented 17 percent of the entries in the Knowledgebase in 2007, just behind the leader in projects (not money spent) the USA, as shown below.
The graph below shows ranking of countries by number of new RFID projects recorded during the year of 2007. Then there is a listing of the top Chinese RFID tag suppliers.
Source: IDTechEx RFID Knowledgebase
However, the pace is slackening in China and it will not be by far the world's largest user of RFID in 2008. Its market will drop so it shares the top spot with the USA. Indeed, in the Knowledgebase entries so far this year, we see that, China has dropped from number two to number three behind the UK in number of new RFID projects recorded. In 2008, 58 new US case studies have been entered against 12 UK ones and eight in China. The uniquely comprehensive IDTechEx report RFID in China is continuously updated to reflect these changes.
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For more attend Printed Electronics Europe 2008.