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Microsoft gets friendly with Alien

Agreement establishes Alien Technology as one of the key partners in the software giant's RFID initiative.

Microsoft appears to have dipped another toe in the emerging arena of radio frequency identification, or RFID. RFID gear maker Alien Technology said this week that it has formed an alliance with the software giant. The agreement establishes Alien as one of the key partners in Microsoft's RFID initiative and ensures Microsoft will design software that supports Alien's tags and readers. Microsoft also will use Alien's hardware in an RFID demonstration this week at its European TechEd conference in Amsterdam, the company said.

Microsoft said in March that it plans to introduce a set of programs next year designed to help companies manage the product tagging technology. The RFID Services Platform will be a product that connects the hardware that monitors RFID signals with the business software that processes it, the company said. Microsoft also has formed RFID-related partnerships with GlobeRanger and ConnecTerra.