Communication technologies play an important role in the global electronic shelf label market. These provide two-way communication between the ESL tags and consumers or ESL tags and the core software. Both the type of communication is essential for efficient operations and steady revenue streams. Vendor facing, and customer-facing technology divide the ESL market. Here are the technologies that help transmit information of these tags in a large area such as supermarkets and hypermarkets in the retail industry. The global electronic shelf label market will worth around $1,675 million and is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 28% during 2018-2023.

 

Radio Frequency (RF)

Ultra-high frequencies in the range of 300–3,000 MHZ are the ones, which are used for the civilian communication purpose, encompassing mobile communication, WLAN, Bluetooth, Zig-Bee, GPS, two-way radios, etc. The main advantage of the RF communication is that there is no line of sight issue and hence the communication can happen without any hindrance. The leading vendors are using this technology to communicate with the base station and ESL tags.

RF products in electronic shelf label market: SES Imagotag ESL tags have an operating frequency of 2.400-2.480 GHz, which is near the Wi-Fi frequency. M2Communication and Displaydata ESL tags with an operating frequency of sub 1GHz which is untroubled by interference are revolutionizing the global ESL market.

Infrared (IR)

IR is electromagnetic radiation with a longer wavelength than the visible light. IR signals have higher data rates compared to radio frequency signals. The two major types of IR signals used for communication in the global electronic shelf label market are directed or diffused. The use of these IR technologies for ESL tags create no problem of interference from the crowded radio frequency range in large areas of retail stores.

IR products in electronic shelf label market: Pricer, an in-store digital shelf-edge solution provider, use diffuse IR as the communication technology that has no line of sight issues and increases in-store experience for consumers.

Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE)

BLE (aka Bluetooth Smart) is the newly adopted to the Bluetooth specification, and it operates at sub 1GHZ radio frequency. Proximity capabilities that are introduced with BLE have enabled the proliferation of location-based services such as beaconing and geo-fencing applications across industries in the global market. For instance, BLE beacons and geofencing capabilities are currently used ESLs for in-store navigation, and exponentially used for the mobile-based product promotions and positioning.

BLE products in electronic shelf label market: Pricer recently deployed a solution in Carrefour where the customer can interact with ESLs through the mobile application “C-où.” The innovative application has geolocalization which helps to identify in-store and navigate products for consumers in the global electronic shelf label market.

Near Field Communication (NFC)

NFC devices evolved from RFID and are powered by the device that is trying to access the information from the NFC tags. The communication levels of these devices are one directional where the NFC tag will provide the information that is coded into it. The use of NFC in the global electronic shelf label market allows mobile devices that contain the corresponding applications to be in proximity to the ESL tags to process information and reflect on the consumers’ smart devices, and thus the sensitivity and user-interactiveness do play a significant role in this industry.

NFC products in electronic shelf label market: Pricer SmartTag and SES Imagotag G1 retail 7.4 red NFC have the capabilities the enhance the customer interactivity with applications on the mobile phones thereby, increase satisfaction levels.

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