RFID or BLE? These two have been a subject of comparison for a very long time, that’s until now! Why settle for one when you can combine both for the ultimate advantage? In this blog post, we will present how RFID integrates with BLE for the perfect tracking solution maximizing costs and enhancing capabilities.

Understanding RFID and BLE

For quite some time, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) and BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) have been compared due to their shared use as wireless technologies for identification, tracking, and data exchange purposes.

However, each of these technologies has its advantages and disadvantages based on the specific vertical they are used in. To quickly summarize:


RFID is a smart technology that uses radio signals to read and capture information stored on special tags. Many retailers are using RFID to increase sales and improve asset management accuracy to 99%.

  • Cost: Generally very low cost with each tag costs around $0.01, especially when purchased in bulk.
  • Range: Typically shorter range, ideally up to 10 meters.
  • Reader Infrastructure: Requires specific devices (fixed/handheld readers) for RFID scanning.
  • Data Transfer Speed: Relatively slower data transfer rates compared to BLE.
  • Interference: Metals and liquids might interfere, affecting performance.
  • Capabilities: RFID provides high accuracy with a wide range of cost-effective solutions. It is widely used in inventory management, asset tracking, validation, and more.


BLE is a low-power wireless connection that links devices—like how your phone connects to smart devices—enabling them to communicate with each other using less energy.

  • Cost: Usually higher cost per tag compared to RFID due to the battery and additional functionalities.
  • Range: Offers a longer range, 10 meters or up to 100 meters.
  • Reader Infrastructure: Utilize readers for scanning and communications but also enabled with Smartphones.
  • Data Transfer Speed: Offers faster data transfer rates compared to RFID.
  • Interference: Less affected by interference from obstacles and materials.
  • Capabilities: BLE has a larger data storage capacity and is known for its integration with sensors, allowing tracking of various metrics such as temperature, humidity, motion, etc. Frequently used for smart homes, device connection, industrial IoT, and temperature-sensitive asset tracking.

RFID and BLE combination

Formerly, it was either this or that, but now it's becoming clearer that combining the two will bring better results for improved efficiency and a custom budget-friendly solution. Merging these technologies enables us to leverage RFID's cost-effective solutions alongside its precision and adept tracking capabilities. Simultaneously, it allows us to harness BLE's sensor-based advantages for additional features.

For instance, if your inventory consists of temperature-sensitive goods needing cold chain management, you can leverage RFID for item-level tracking and validation. At the same time, employ BLE temperature sensors at the box or pallet levels to ensure continuous temperature monitoring, guaranteeing optimal conditions.

Such solutions maximize the potential of both technologies as it uses RFID as a trusted, accurate, and cost-effective solution, and BLE on a lower scale to reduce cost for the benefits of tracking temperature, humidity, and more.

Implementing the RFID and BLE as a combined solution

Thanks to the Chainlane platform, the integration of RFID and BLE becomes seamless. Chainlane, being a tech-agnostic solution, allows you to harness multiple technologies within a single platform. All captured data is compiled into one comprehensive dashboard, providing a clear, unified view of all available information.

The solution has showcased its advantages across various sectors, including Retail, Food and Beverage, Manufacturing, Logistics, and beyond. It consistently delivers optimal outcomes in the most flexible and efficient methods available.

In conclusion, the integration of RFID and BLE presents an innovative solution that transcends the limitations of either technology alone. This combination maximizes the cost-efficiency and accuracy of RFID while tapping into BLE's additional metrics. The seamless integration of these technologies, facilitated by platforms like Chainlane, empowers various industries with flexible, efficient, and optimized solutions, ensuring enhanced capabilities and cost-effective operations across the board.

To experience this solution firsthand, visit us at SATO’s booth during the NRF 2024 big show. If you're unable to attend but still want a preview, schedule a demo with us!

This blog post was contributed by Omry Levy, Chainlan’e Head of Product. Omry has been instrumental in leading the integration of RFID and BLE technologies within the Chainlane software.