AutoID & Data Capture Blog

Why the Zebra and OATSystems/Checkpoint Partnership is a Good Fit

Zebra and OAT/Checkpoint – two established leaders in their respective markets - announced that they entered into a “cooperative relationship and licensing agreement”.  The non-exclusive arrangement affords Zebra with an OEM license for OATxpress™, a middleware platform used for capturing, filtering and managing data from AutoID systems.  I say AutoID here – not RFID – because the OAT product is a true AutoID platform, not only capable of supporting a host of AutoID and sensor solutions, but also capable of supporting further application development.

Why this is a good fit:

  • Zebra adds a proven middleware solution that complements its industry leading location, RFID and barcode solutions, enabling the company to add more value and contribute more to their customers’ installations … as well as the evolution of that deployment.
  • Zebra adds a tool to their portfolio that adds functionality, promotes future proofing and supports controlled migration to other/emerging AutoID solutions.
  • OAT/Checkpoint gains a ‘heavy weight’ partner in the AutoID industry that not only has one of the strongest brand names in its core markets, but also has a very strong channel that can/will be leveraged to extend footprint and capitalize on emerging opportunities.
  • Both companies have overlapping footprints in their target markets (i.e., Asset tracking in Manufacturing), thus each offers the other further reach in core markets with a bigger ‘tool box’.
  • The OAT/Checkpoint platform is built on Java which makes it a highly flexible, forward looking platform with a complete set of APIs for distributed applications, enables programs to run anywhere on networks, and runs on top of existing platforms. These and other Java-based capabilities made the OAT/Checkpoint software very attractive to Zebra.   

While the early focus of the OEM relationship will be in Zebra’s and Zebra channel partners’ location products and solutions that leverage the OAT/Checkpoint software platform, we expect rapid integration into other application and technology solutions. This will enable Zebra’s customers (users and partners) to mix and match AutoID technologies based on business process improvement requirements (which drive technology selection/change). 

The complementary nature of this relationship along with the benefits for each firm makes this a win-win in our book.  VDC will be monitoring the maturation of this relationship, the resulting bundled solutions and watching to see if other companies collaborate in a similar fashion.   


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