Charles Walton, The Father of RFID Passes Away

Charles Walton - RFID Inventor
Charles Walton - RFID Inventor

At age 89, radio frequency identification (RFID) wireless technology inventor, Charles (aka Charlie) Walton has passed away.

RFID technology is now commonly used to provide secure access, keep inventory counts, for tracking purposes as well as for limited data exchange. Although many people have heard of RFID and use it, most are not aware of the work of Charlie Walton.

RFID technology was solely invented by Charlie Walton in the 1970’s and patented in 1973 and 1983 . Although patented many years ago, RFID technology only came to be used more recently in the 2000s. The reason for a gap in years between the invention and usage of RFID tags was the level of development of technology. As technology started to grow faster and become less costly, RFID tags were created for a cheaper, more affordable price. In turn the usage became more common as it became more affordable.

RFID technology eventually earned Charlie Walton millions of dollars and he continued to invent technology related to radio-frequency technology until his death this November.

RFID technology allows for the transmission of short-range radio waves, to make use of a database located on a computer to function. RFID’s major competition, up to this day, have been the cheap barcodes that are found on store merchandize for scanning.

Walton’s invention uses a tiny electrical current from the RFID reader which is transferred onto tag to provide it with enough power to generate a response by simply starting a wireless connection with it.

The first RFID tag was much more bulkier than the tags commonly used in the present. In 1980, Walton added a new twist to his invention creating a digital version of the RFID tag, which allowed for the information or data on the tags to be altered or changed.

Even though Walton made a lot of money off of royalties for his creation, his patents expired before the large wave of RFID technology across the world.

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