A solution from optical character reading specialist and systems’ integrator Prime Vision is equally competent at reading handwriting, graphics and other marks as it is with reading machine printed text and barcodes. The solution is proving to be useful in the warehouse and logistics market.

This technology, which has already proven its worth in postal automation, has now been further developed by Prime Vision for automated product handling. The result is LogisticsMatch, a new OCR solution whose application scope and flexibility goes beyond that of standard-library OCR packages.

This technology has already been chosen by two major retailers in the UK and can be applied to a range of applications. In retail distribution for example LogisticsMatch can be used to automatically capture the quantity of goods handwritten on the casing or simply to update stock records. Or it can verify the price per kilogram of foodstuffs against the barcode.

In essence LogisticsMatch allows text in any language, a logo or any mark, whether it has been created by machine or by hand, to be automatically read and used to automate product handling. The information can be in virtually any contrasting colour and at any orientation. And it is equally suited to simple product flow applications right through to complete logistical processes.

LogisticsMatch incorporates all the elements of Prime Vision’s latest character and symbol recognition technology. This includes powerful region-of-interest finding, a signpost that tells the OCR software where to decode. Various help tools assist this process including an offline Label Identification Tool that uses barcodes and other symbols or marks on the label as a guide. Multiple different label formats can be identified, providing a stable reference point to boost recognition.

The basic LogisticsMatch platform is said to be highly cost competitive and the payback through productivity is quick. This is complemented by improved quality levels thanks to typical read-rates of over 95 per cent, well above human capabilities.

LogisticsMatch can be supplied as a dynamic link library (DLL) for integration into an existing system or Prime Vision can build a complete turnkey solution tailored to the needs of the specific application. A turnkey solution includes all the hardware and software necessary to capture images from conveyor lines and other sorting systems. It then processes the images and sends the resulting data to the warehouse management system, host system or sorter.

One of the benefits of all Prime Vision products is their modularity. At any stage Prime Vision can integrate additional modules from its product programme. These plug-ins include Key-IT video coding that allows data to be entered onto a warehouse management system in a fast, smart and efficient way.

Identify-IT image archive and retrieval is another option that converts images into jpegs for additional quality control and for evidential use in damage claims. Further modules include Monitor-IT process management and reporting. All Prime Vision systems are available with the company’s 24/7 support.