Thursday, September 17, 2009

RFID is the future for Apple portable products

Forget video recording & FM playback, the next innovation that will drive the uptake of portable consumer devices is Radio Frequency Identity (RFID). An innovation that will hopefully spur better sustainable or social choices from the consumer.

Goleman's new book Ecological Intelligence discusses how the lack of information from manufacturers, lead to sub-optimal choices. As a consumer we don't know the CO2 trail of products, we don't know if child labour is used to make a certain product. RFID could be the missing link.

As Dara O'Rouke from Good Guide explains, products could be embedded with an electronic tag that transmits radio signals which can automatically alert your mobile phone to display a green or red colour.

I figure, whether it displays red or green could be according to the user defined rules that you input into your ipod, iphone, or other mobile device. Say we want a product that is produced with the least amount of CO2 emissions. Our phone after recieving the radio frequency can automatically look up a database and respond with an easy to intrepret colour choice. As an encouragement/punishment to manufacturers, products that don't include these tags, could automatically display red.

I think coupling this technology with Apple's mainstream appeal, could see the technology really take off, and start influencing product manufacturers to jump on board. Having more information can ultimately influence our choice on goods, and help promote positive changes in terms of the environment and social justice.

So if you want to see this change, talk to apple, and the major mobile phone manufacturers. Let's make this technology happen, and enact a positive change!

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