Starting next month, stores in the Ginza district in Tokyo will be beaming coupons, special notices, and other information to shoppers and passers-by through the use of RFID tags and wireless transmitters. The initiative, called the Tokyo Ubiquitous Network Project, will allow shoppers to rent a prototype reader or get messages on their own cell phones. The phone or reader’s location Shoppers can either rent a prototype reader or get messages on their cell phones. The phone or reader’s location is identified by the RFID network, and then matches it to information provided by shops within a certain proximity. People will also be able to access maps and visitor information in different languages by bringing their cell phones or readers close to street lamps with embedded RFID tags.
The service will be available as a trial from January 21st to March 10th and, according to the article, has generated significant interest from stores in Ginza. This is the first large-scale trial of RFID-based LBS services for conveying localized business information that I’ve heard about, and I’m anxious to see how successful it is. I am also certain that there will be others in the near future, as a lot of the innovation that we have seen in the law few years starts to bear results.