The global radio-frequency identification (RFID) market is growing despite the fact that the world's largest RFID project--the $6-billion China National ID card scheme--was completed a year earlier. According to IDTechEx, the global RFID market is rising 5 percent this year to $5.56 billion. Most of the action has been in the US, where the largest orders continue to be placed, as well as in the UK, China, and Japan.

For example, CSC and IBM have landed an order for $570 million to upgrade the UK e-passport applications and enrolment system. In addition, Unisys was one of four companies selected by the US Army Program Executive Office-Enterprise Information Systems for a contract for the Radio Frequency Identification III (RFID III) program. China is installing RFID throughout its factories and supply chain in order to underpin the nation's pre-eminence in manufacturing. On the technology front, wireless sensor networks--dubbed third-generation active RFID--are now being offered by a large number of companies.