Insight 01: Wafer thin but packed with power – new Smart Labels

Only two millimetres thick with a printed battery: It’s hard to believe a piece of paper this thin is set to revolutionise logistics with advanced localisation solutions. MBS is currently planning its pilot shipments with the cutting-edge technology and invites interested customers to participate.

A wafer-thin tracking device designed to look like a parcel label hit the market this year, bringing us one step close to the future of logistics. The new product was launched by Lufthansa Industry Solutions (LHIND) in cooperation with Pod Group, an IT company, and SODAQ, a Dutch provider of tracking solutions.

Thanks to its ultra-slim design, the so-called Smart Label can be affixed to small or light objects, which were previously difficult to monitor with conventional, bulky tracking devices. This innovative solution allows logistics companies like MBS to track shipments around the world in real-time – whether it’s a small envelope or a large painting. As a result, logistics providers and their customers can benefit from an enhanced level of security, which is especially critical in the realm of Anytime emergency logistics.

“Smart mobile devices are set to play a crucial role in driving the digital transformation of logistics,” explains Daniel Steckel, CEO of MBS Holding. “At MBS, we are exploring this topic and analysing the best solutions for our customers. The Smart Label offers numerous opportunities, and we are excited to be testing potential applications through this pilot project with our first customers.”

The Smart Label uses the low-power 5G wireless standard (LTE CAT-M) to send data regarding the device’s location and temperature back to a central dashboard. Through a middleware platform provided by LHIND, users can take advantage of geofences, comprehensive device management and goods localisation. This means that users can set the system to automatically notify them when a shipment arrives or leaves important locations.

The printed battery makes the Smart Label particularly lightweight, while the low-power connectivity optimises battery life and ensures up to six months of use. Depending on the frequency of transmission, the tag can be used multiple times. Moreover, the product’s alkaline battery is more environmentally friendly than conventional lithium batteries, and the materials used are recyclable, making it a sustainable solution for smart logistics tracking.