How RFID is making ‘waves’ at events today


A discrete form of wearable technology, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is commonly used for tracking and access control, without imposing on a guest’s event experience. RFID functions through the use of radio waves that create communication between an RFID-enabled tag and a reader. These tags are placed in badges, wristbands, apparel, and other wearable technology that work across NFC (Near Field Communication) and UHF (Ultra High Frequency) platforms.

Why use RFID?

It not only improves event experiences but presents planners with a number of valued-added and ROI-building benefits like:

  • A more innovative and secure option as opposed to the traditional name badge. NFC is also more refined than QR codes as it’s harder to copy: a QR code is easily copied by simply taking its picture, whereas an NFC tag requires an NFC reader and encoder.
  • An interactive experience at the event. An attendee can simply check in by tapping their RFID chip-enabled badge or wristband to an NFC reader device. A Unique Identifier (UID) is read, paired, and assigned to the attendee.
  • A type of technology that allows for easy and secure tracking and data exchange throughout an event. This is especially useful for multi-session events that require access control and accreditations.

How does RFID technology help you solve long queues, facilitate an efficient on-site event experience, and help to establish a global tech brand in the process?

It was late on a cold winter night in New York, and Kerem Baran was freezing in line while waiting to be checked off a guestlist at one the city’s fashionable nightclubs. Kerem’s annoyance and numb extremities prompted the young computer engineer to design an app to allow event organisers to manage their guest lists digitally. Boomset was born.

The premise of the platform was simple and quickly adopted by event operators across industries beyond the nightlife. In addition to digital check-ins, Kerem’s application allowed real-time analysis of the event’s success. “For the first time, organisers had immediate access to basic information: how many people are here, who is in, who is missing…”. Post-event analysis also became faster and multifaceted, the digital platform allowing all manner of statistics to be scrutinised.

Kerem’s outstanding skills in development proved to be both a blessing and a curse. “I was heavily involved in all aspects of Boomset’s development. I spent days and nights refining the app, thinking of new solutions, enjoying the highs and lows of pure creation. I realized, though, that the best innovations don’t transform the world unless they are actually used by people! I put on my suit and tie and started making phone calls.”

Boomset was quickly adopted for major customers such as Facebook, General Electric, Rolling Stone, and Inc Magazine. As more and more event professionals started to use the app, Boomset gathered large amounts of data, providing a blueprint for further refining the software and developing new features.

One of these major features is the ability to print event badges directly from the app. “It seems obvious, but nobody had thought about this before. We were the first ones to develop a technical solution to allow our badges to print directly from the app to a Brother label printer. Brother immediately saw the new market opportunities created by this functionality and came on board with their support.”

It is worth noting that Kerem is particularly proud of Boomset’s potential to positively impact the environment. “Instead of having to pre-print hundreds of badges – some of which may never be claimed – organizers can quickly print badges on demand at the same time they are greeting attendees. Sustainability should be on everyone’s mind.“

Today, Kerem continues to direct the app’s refinement with RFID technology. Pairing this technology with reusable NFC badges and wristbands, event organizers can gather more accurate data that’s relevant to them. It also makes for a more sustainable event while lessening the amount of time-consuming on-site operations.

Boomset remains a leader in Event Technology by integrating multiple operating systems. “We designed the app from the ground up in a modular fashion. We were able to easily roll out an Android version, and we developed a Windows mobile version that will launch this fall, just in time for the new lineup of Windows detachable screen laptops.“ Kerem Baran’s ability to identify market niches and his success in bringing innovative solutions to the market make him a model for all young aspiring entrepreneurs.

Adam Parry
Author: Adam Parry

Adam is the co-founder and editor of Adam, a technology evangelist also organises Event Tech Live, Europe’s only show dedicated to event technology and the Event Technology Awards. Both events take place in November, London.