Both RFID and Bluetooth Technologies are used for wireless communication between devices, but each offer different benefits and security features. And the typical applications of RFID and Bluetooth Technologies are also differ. RFID is mainly used asset tracking in inventory and logistics, where as Bluetooth technology is a highly robust, widely accepted and low cost medium to communicate between different types of devices. For example, With a Bluetooth enabled phone and handset, you can talk without a wired headphone. Similarly, with a blue tooth enabled computer and printer, you can do printing jobs without a wired connection between the two devices.
RFID Vs Bluetooth Technology Comparison
- Type of RFID and Bluetooth: Active tags and Passive tags are the two types of RFID tags. In Bletooth technology, There are 3 broad categories of Bluetooth devices depend on the range of the device. Class 3 category has a mere range of about a meter. Class 2 category is of a medium range of about 30 feet and has found application in mobile devices. The Class 1 category devices have 10 times the range of Class 2 devices. It has many industrial applications where devices are laid at big distance from each other but still need to communicate regularly.
- Range of RFID Vs Bluetooth: RFID communication range is typically a few centimeters to 5 meters. Bluetooth range is about 10 metres.
- Power Requirements: RFID uses very little amount of energy during communication, as the asset tracking time will a fraction of a second. Bluetooth consumes more energy as it is used for more time periods in continuous usage applications such as Bluetooth headsets.
- Battery Life of RFID Vs Bluetooth: RFID tags have a battery life of around 10 years. Bluetooth devices may have battery backup time around a few hours to few days.
- Battery Types Used for RFID and Bluetooth: Primary battery cells can be used for RFID tags, but Bluetooth technology needs rechargeable batteries, which can be recharged or operated with normal electrical connection.
- Interference Noise: RFID technology in certain environments like airport can interfere with other transmitting devices. This problem doesn’t exist with Bluetooth technology.
- Consumer Usability: RFID tags can be physically attached or embedded to the item which needs to be tracked. RFID readers installed at suitable points can read all the tags in its vicinity. Bluetooth technology is not simple for any ordinary person or a small company to incorporate. Bluetooth technology is usually incorporated during manufacturing itself, While RFID tag are easy to program and linked to the item.
- Applications of RFID Vs Bluetooth: RFID is gaining more popularity for the asset tracking applications, not for the wireless communication, on other hand Bluetooth is used for more than just one exchange of data.
- Communication Active Time: An RFID tag may be read once at a time and then it might not be read for hours. For instance, Bluetooth enabled phone and headset will have many transmissions from phone to headset and vice versa.
- Multimedia Transmission: Bluetooth can be used for exchange of both voice and data, whereas RFID is used only for limited data exchange.
- Performance against Obstacles: RFID tags and Bluetooth technology deteriorate in performance if the area of their usage has number of blocking structures such as concrete wall, iron or steel structures.