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ThingMagic Embedded Reader Module Components Lower Costs, Enable Faster Development of RFID Solutions

ThingMagic, Inc. (www.thingmagic.com), a leading developer of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, today introduced a new set of modular hardware and software components that allow customers to quickly develop customized, embedded RFID solutions using the ThingMagic Mercury5e (M5e) UHF RFID family of reader modules. The components include a four port, stackable multiplexer, enabling an M5e reader to support up to eight antennas; a low profile heatsink to accommodate high temperature environments; and a power/interface board with a USB port and support for a wide range of AC and DC power supplies. ThingMagic also announced a completely redesigned Mercury API, which supports the company’s full range of fixed and M5e embedded reader product lines.

“For many of our customers, RFID is being embedded into a wider range of form factors and applications, moving beyond traditional, one size fits all RFID solutions. To support faster prototyping and deployments, we developed a set of embedded reader module components, further extending the utility of the ThingMagic product family,” said Yael Maguire, co-founder and CTO of ThingMagic. “These components and supporting development tools dramatically reduce application development time and greatly expand the opportunity to embed RFID into a variety of solutions. Our goal is to make RFID simpler.”

The following components are available for use with the ThingMagic M5e and M5e-EU embedded reader modules, without the need for mechanical alteration. Depending on solution requirements, these components can be implemented independently or together:

  • M5e Multiplexer: Lowering the cost per read point by up to 60 percent, the M5e Multiplexer is ideal for cost-sensitive applications where many co-located antennas are needed. A single multiplexer allows an M5e reader to support four antennas, while eight antennas are supported by two stacked multiplexers. Drawing power and control by daisy-chaining the M5e’s interface ribbon cable, customers can extend multi-port capability to existing designs without mechanical alteration. The multiplexer is fully integrated with the search and reporting capabilities of the latest M5e firmware.
  • M5e Heatsink: The low profile M5e Heatsink is ideal for customers who use ThingMagic M5e modules in sealed enclosures, in continuous operation, or in high temperature environments. Thermal pads optimize heat conductivity from board to heatsink, and from heatsink to chassis.
  • M5e Power/Interface Board: The M5e Power/Interface board adapts the M5e serial interface to high speed USB, and conditions DC power to support in-vehicle or AC powered applications. The USB port is designed to drive the module’s serial port up to its maximum speed of 921.6 kbps. A non-USB TTL interface is also available for board-to-board connectivity.

The new Mercury API supports C#/.NET, Java and Python programming environments to provide a consistent programmatic interface across the company’s fixed reader and M5e embedded reader module families, reducing time to market for customers using a variety of development environments.

These products can be ordered now for shipping by mid-third quarter 2009. The M5e Multiplexer is priced at $100; the Heatsink is priced at $40; and the Power/Interface Board is priced at $100. The Mercury API will be available to existing customers from the ThingMagic support website. Please contact ThingMagic sales for more information at [email protected].

About ThingMagic, Inc.

ThingMagic is a leading developer of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, with broad experience in applying RFID in a wide range of industrial and consumer applications. ThingMagic's customers include some of the world's largest retailers, consumer companies, automotive firms, manufacturers and industrial automation firms. ThingMagic products include fixed and embedded RFID readers and antennas, embedded and OEM RFID technology, and professional services to facilitate the OEM integration of RFID into a wide range of industrial and consumer products. ThingMagic is “The Engine in RFID™.” http://www.thingmagic.com.

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