• Wed. May 29th, 2024

Comparing RFID PVC Cards with Conventional Magnetic Stripe Cards

For many years, smartcards have been widely used in a variety of businesses and even in daily life. We have used cards for commerce, access control, and other reasons ever since IBM introduced magnetic stripe cards in 1960. But as technology has improved, additional, more sophisticated techniques—like RFID—have emerged. Which is better, RFID PVC cards or conventional magnetic stripe cards? is thus raised.

Read More: PVC RFID tags

That’s all we’ll be talking about today.

How Do PVC RFID Cards Operate?

These cards are made up of an RFID Inlay encased in two PVC protecting layers that are adhered together. The card uses radio waves to communicate with the RFID reader in order to function. The inlay’s chip has data preprogrammed into it. For security purposes, these cards typically use NFC (Near-Field Communication) to communicate. Through the process of electromagnetic induction, the chip is powered up once it comes into close proximity to a scanner. The reader then receives a signal from the inlay’s antenna with the authentication data.

The Mechanism of Magnetic Stripe Cards

The electromagnetic recording theory underlies the operation of these stripes. To put it briefly, the stripe is made up of microscopic ferromagnetic particles that are thinly coated with plastic film. These particles have north and south magnetic poles, which correspond to binary data. This method operates by producing a tiny magnetic field inside the card reader device. To be clear, the machine’s reader head is a tiny electromagnet that, while in use, produces a tiny field. The stripe travels along the reader’s head when you swipe the card through the reader, and the ferro-magnetized particles perturb the field. This interference is captured by the reader’s sensors, which then transmit the signals to the chip. Following that, the chip transforms these impulses into binary data and finally readable data.

RFID PVC Cards: Contactless Identification’s Advantages

As was previously said, NFC technology is used by RFID smartcards to connect with the system; there are a number of advantages to employing this system. Let’s talk about them.


Usually encrypted, the information on these cards is inaccessible to readers without the encryption key. Additionally, you can only access these from a few millimeters away because they employ NFC.


These cards do not require any human data entry and offer a strong data transfer rate. In financial applications such as credit cards, entering a security code might be all that’s required. Because of this, PCV cards have a very high level of use.

Tracking of Employees

Custom smartcards are used by many companies to provide staff entry to the building. Employers are able to monitor employee mobility within and outside of the building thanks to this. It facilitates the upkeep of an accurate attendance, break, and other database.

Amount of Storage

A magnetic stripe cannot store as much data as an RFID chip. For example, an RFID chip in a smartcard may often carry up to 2 kilobytes (16000 bits) of data, but a stripe can typically hold only 1025 bits.

Duration of Operations

These cards are incredibly dependable and durable since they are contactless and do not rely on deterioratable elements like magnetic fields. They don’t deteriorate physically or experience wear and tear while in use. They have a passive RFID inlay that lasts for a very long time.

The advantages of a conventional magnetic stripe card

Since the 1960s, magnetic stripe cards have been a typical feature of the market, having been there for more than 60 years. Even though they are no longer necessary due to advances in technology, we still use them. This is due to their innate benefits, which include:


Since magnetic strip integration on cards is so inexpensive, even after they become outdated, they are still used as a redundancy. For instance, because encrypted chips and RFID are more durable and safe, credit and debit cards already employ them. Despite this, manufacturers continue to utilize magnetic stripes since they add very little more expense.

Quick and Simple to Use

To utilize this technology, just slide the stripe through the reader’s slot. The reader records all the data on the card as soon as you swipe it. making this technology incredibly user-friendly and effective.

Safe Access Management

These cards can be used to grant access to individuals based on permission. For instance, access cards with varying degrees of authority may be issued to employees at different levels. This keeps unauthorized workers out of secure and critical locations of a building. By accurately documenting employee moves into and out of various organizational domains, it also enhances security.


The process of reprogramming data on a magnetic stripe is really straightforward. Because there is no longer a need to throw away the previous card in the event that protocols or permission levels change, they are more adaptable and less expensive.

Frequently Requested Enquiries

1. What distinguishes Magstripe card technology from RFID technology?

The technology employed in the two is the primary distinction. RFID transfers data wirelessly between two sites using radio frequencies. On the other side, data is sent utilizing magnetized ferromagnetic particles in magstripe technology, which disturbs an established magnetic field (produced by the reader’s head).

Q2. When compared to magnetic stripe cards, what are the two benefits of smart cards?

With one exception—cost—RFID smartcards are substantially more advantageous than magstripe cards. Magstripe cards are quite inexpensive to produce. However, smart cards communicate via RFID technology, which means that

Their data is encrypted, therefore their security is improved.

They last longer because passive RFID may function almost indefinitely.

Q3. What are the uses for magnetic stripe cards?

This technology has many uses that we can and have been utilizing it for.

(A). Bank cards include magnetic strips on the back to facilitate simple transactions.

(B) Security departments use these cards to manage gate entry.

(C). These cards can also be used in corporations for time and attendance tracking systems.