At the heart of Project Unlock is the ability to activate a powered product after it has been legitimately purchased — rendering a stolen tool inoperable and virtually worthless.
To make this work: in the manufacturing process, a manufacturer embeds a wireless RFID (Radio Frequency Identity) chip into a powered product. The tag is preloaded with that item’s unique serial number – which is also embedded in the box’s barcode – and the product is set to inoperable.
At the store, a customer takes the product to the register, gets the barcode scanned, and pays – just like they always do. A point-of-sale RFID scanner reads all tags in range, finds the tool with the correct serial number, and writes a unique secret key value that activates the tool for use.Lowe’s Innovation Labs