Sounds like this would make a trip to the grocery store a snap. These tags are based on a carbon-nanotube-infused ink for ink-jet printers.
Rice researchers, in collaboration with a team led by Gyou-jin Cho at Sunchon National University in Korea, have come up with an inexpensive, printable transmitter that can be invisibly embedded in packaging. It would allow a customer to walk a cart full of groceries or other goods past a scanner on the way to the car; the scanner would read all items in the cart at once, total them up and charge the customer’s account while adjusting the store’s inventory.
More advanced versions could collect all the information about the contents of a store in an instant, letting a retailer know where every package is at any time.
RFID tags printed through a new roll-to-roll process could replace bar codes and make checking out of a store a snap. Credit: Gyou-Jin Cho/Sunchon National University