The companies plan to complete a prototype chip in 2020 and start volume production in 2021. The new ZETag SoC incorporates the LPWA ZETA-G protocol proposed by ZiFiSense with Socionext’s design expertise in RF and MCU to implement the functionalities that currently require two silicon dies into one SoC, resulting in significant cost, area and power savings and improved performance. Most of the IC tags currently in use are passive tags, which do not have a power supply. However, existing active tags cost around several tens of dollars, and transmission distance is less than 100 meters.
In comparison, the ZETag transmission can reach several kilometers, its cost will be reduced to the extent that the tags can be used as disposable.
The ZETags will push the boundary of IoT sensor usage, covering broader applications from durable goods to consumables. Proposed applications include asset management for industrial sectors, end-to-end visualization of products and containers in logistics, control of hazardous waste, and storage and disposal of medical supplies and waste. The ZETags are also expected to be utilized in management of building structure, warehouse inventory, and livestock.
Socionext - www.socionext.com
ZiFiSense - www.zifisense.com
Techsor – www.techsor.co.jp