Is Package Tracking A Real Thing?
I bet all of us have faced the “excruciating pain” of waiting for orders to be delivered. I mean, I order a pizza at 9:30 and after 10 minutes I call them back saying that it’s been two hours since I’ve ordered my pizza ranting to them about how lazy and irresponsible they are. I’m pretty sure you’ve done this once or twice. But to be honest, it might be as irritating as it is because we’re not getting visuals of the whole process, maybe if we did, we wouldn’t be as grumpy and annoyed. This brings me to RFID technology, with which package tracking is a piece of cake.
Imagine that you ordered a huge amount of makeup, makeup haul, and you can’t wait to lay your hands on. How much easier would it be to track your package in real time and see its trajectory from the store to your doorstep? I think this would make our anticipation less “painful”. Have you ever shipped something with DHL or FedEx? If you did, then you probably checked the status of your package through something called “Tracking Number”. This works as follows: each package has a unique bar or QR code attached to it. At each point of transit, the package is scanned through a scanner either manually or automatically. Then the scanned data is sent to the database, so that the package is followed throughout the whole journey, or sent to the Cloud to be previewed by senders or recipients.
More recently, RFID invaded the field and replaced barcodes. With that being said, the barcodes attached to packages are now replaced with RFID tags.
Package tracking has changed the way carriers interact with customers eliminating mystery and uncertainty out of package delivery and replacing it with a convenient, reliable real-time data system which keeps senders and recipients fully informed of every step of their package’s journey & when will it arrive given human’s impatient nature. This way women can track their makeup packages, men can track their PS games & I can track my food!!
But let’s talk a little bit technical wise. How on Earth is it possible to know exactly where a package may be at any given moment and to give an exact prediction of when it will arrive?
Firstly, it’s important to be aware of the fact that there are different levels of tracking. Sometimes you are able to select a more detailed tracking service and sometimes you can have minimum access to information about your package’s location like if it is packed, shipped and out for delivery. The basic tracking available is actually very easy as it taps into internal information systems which are already found within the companies. This types of tracking give a very clear yet less detailed view of where the package is at, allowing a less accuracy of predicting when will it arrive.
Detailed tracking on the other hand is not so simple. It involves more in-depth access into company systems. This type of tracking systems allow for flexible personalized delivery like you can only receive a package at a certain time or if it is time-sensitive (I usually do this since I leave for work early in the morning every day) this data can be added on the RFID tag (read/write tags) and attached to your package to ensure delivery. If someone wishes to update the information, it will also be updated on the package’s file and so when the RFID tag is scanned, the person dealing with the shipment will be able to act accordingly as soon as they see the information.
No matter what the type or detail of the tracking, the process that takes place to make tracking possible is rather easy. An RFID tag is attached to the package to be scanned by everybody who comes into contact with it using an RFID reader. This means that they can easily update the description or whatever information is attached to that shipment without confusion or the possibility of human error unlike the manual inputting package data. When it finally reaches its destination, you may notice that the delivery man has a scanner to scan the package one last time thus, sending the information to the tracking system.
Package tracking is a great tool for all kinds of deliveries. When you want to send a gift or rather an important item to someone, you can rest assured that the recipient has received the package since you can monitored every step of the way. Furthermore, this comes in handy for packages which have been ‘lost’ in which it makes it easier to find it.
In essence, tracking packages have many advantages some of which are related to the ultimate visibility the shipping company grants as well as the sense of security which is reflected by the loyalty of the customers. It also grants companies a competitive edge that would separate them from their rivals.