Anyone interested in RFID market size or growth needs to take the many projections of such by various analyst and research firms with a few grains of sale.
First, many of the earlier projections have obviously not panned out as forecast.
Second, just what goes into a given market number is somewhat subjective, and not always clear. For example, if a $3 million manufacturing system is installed that happens to use RFID to track work-in-process, how much of that number should be counted as “RFID revenue?”
Finally, the methodologies used to derive the numbers are often not clear and just as often suspect.
The researchers at IDTechEx seem to do among the best jobs of clarifying those issues, and recently released a report on RFID adoption rates in 2007 and projections for 2008 to 2018.
IDTechEx CEO Raghu Das is predicting relatively low market growth worldwide for 2008, with total RFID sales moving from $4.93 billion in 2007 to $5.29 billion this year, or an increase of approximately 7% - good growth for a mature market, but not an emerging one.
Das does see growth accelerating, with the market rising more than five fold (or 500%), to over $25 billion, by 2018. Interestingly, that will involve an increase in RFID tag sales of over 30,000% during that time, “driven by the development of lower cost tags and installed infrastructure which will enable high volumes of articles to be tagged.”
Digging into the Numbers
A summary of the full report (available for purchase at the IDTechEx web site) provides some additional interesting market insights.
(RFID and Automatic Identification Article - Continued Below)