( According to a new study from the VICS Item-Level RFID Initiative (VILRI), a group of advocates for the use of EPC-enabled RFID in the retail supply line, 2012 is predicted to be a “tipping point” year for RFID technology. The study is titled, “RFID Nears a Tipping Point,” and reveals that 80 percent of retailers surveyed are piloting RFID to track item sales in their stores.

The report has been created from information obtained from 56 retailers and 58 suppliers in North America. Accenture has also given its input on the report. Overall, the results show the potential growth of RFID technology for 2012. Some highlights that were found from the study are that Item-Level RFID could be creating a competitive advantage for newer retailers who start their businesses using RFID, allowing them to have better tracking and counts of items so that sales can be increased rapidly. Errors for the most part have been eliminated due to RFID technology use in retail stores, which allows for more realistic revenue reports. In addition, it has been revealed that the cost of RFID will drop as the implementation increases. Finally, the study predicts that within the next 3-5 years most major apparel and footwear retailers will adopt RFID technology.

According to the study, major businesses that have made a small investment to adopt RFID technology have seen rapid growth. They have been able to restock replenished items at a faster pace allowing for better customer service. Increased sales have increased product distribution allowing for much more variety at all locations making the items easily accessible to all customers. This in turn increases customer trust resulting in a better brand reputation. Rates of theft have also been lowered as a result of RFID tags.

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