WPC Certification

Navigating the Digital Wave: WPC ETA Certification for RFID Readers

calendar30 Jan, 2024
timeReading Time: 7 Minutes
Navigating the Digital Wave WPC ETA Certification for RFID Readers

Before going into the process of applying for a WPC ETA Certification for RFID Readers, let us first try to understand what exactly is an RFID Reader. RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification device. It is a standard portable telecommunication and transmission device that emits electromagnetic waves to transmit and receive data from the source. It contains a small scanner that captures a data tag containing a microscopic, machine-readable code such as a bar code or QR code that represents information about a particular product to which it is attached.

The RFID reader emits a signal on the tag using an in-built antenna and reads information embedded therein, which is reflected back to the reader. The coded information received by the reader is decrypted by the reader as per the File Transfer Protocol (FTP) and displayed to the user in human language. Portable or handheld RFID Readers are most commonly used in commercial establishments where large quantities of goods are to be scanned and tallied daily through RFID scanners, such as supermarkets, retail convenience stores, pharmaceutical stores, warehouses, and packing units, etc.

RFID-compatible devices are used to discharge a lot of unmanned functions in day-to-day life, such as vending machines, toll booths, and hotel rooms, which use magnetic key cards for locking and unlocking, etc. Smartphones also contain RFID Readers in their camera systems, allowing users to scan and pay for QR codes and pay for a product/service displayed by the seller/vendor. Over time, RFID technology has witnessed innovation, with new powerful devices and innovative utilities becoming common daily.

Standard-setting and implementation for wireless devices operating in the regulated frequency spectrum are overseen by The Wireless Planning and Coordination Wing (WPC), which was established as part of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in 1952. WPC is headquartered in New Delhi and has Regional Licensing Offices (RLOs) in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Guwahati. Equipment Type Approval (ETA) is a wireless device license and certification required for RFID readers and all other devices that use wireless frequency and technology to communicate.

The WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers is necessary if you want to set up an RFID reader device production or manufacturing business in India or engage in the import/export of such devices. WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers in India signifies that a particular equipment, device, or radio-frequency-operated establishment meets regulatory standards for radio frequency and wireless communications. The WPC ETA certificate, mandated for wireless devices in India, ensures compliance with technical standards and frequency spectrum guidelines. Issued by the Wireless Planning and Coordination Wing, the certification process involves various tests and is necessary for all wireless equipment operating in unlicensed frequency bands.

RFID Reader Certification Process

Wireless Planning and Coordination ETA for RFID Technology is a procedure required formaking submissions and disclosures as required by the Department of Telecommunications. Here is the RFID Reader Certification Process:

Step 1- Registering on the Online Portal of WPCC

The first step to obtaining a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Reader is registering online on the Saral Sachar Portal of the Department of Telecommunications. On the portal, you should make the choice of the type of products or devices you wish to import or manufacture and pay the requisite application fees. You are also required to provide a self-declaration for the application and devices selected for import. Post registration, you will receive an Application ID. 

Step 2- Getting Radio Frequency (RF) test reports

Assessing wireless equipment for radio frequency parameters and efficiency is crucial. The acceptance of Radio Frequency testing reports from an International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) accredited foreign lab or a National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) accredited lab for WPC ETA approval simplifies the process, ensuring compliance with national regulations and standards.

Step 3- Application and Document Submission

Submitting an application for the WPC ETA requires detailed wireless device information. Essential documents include test reports, technical specifications, and import licenses. The process involves great communication with the WPC department and using the Saral Sanchar portal for online applications. The Ministry of Communications oversees the approval process through the WPC.

Step 4- Paying the Government Fees

The final step involves paying the consolidated government fee and professional fees in the WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers process, ensuring compliance with regulatory standards. It involves much effort and is essential for WPC ETA certification approval. The process takes place through the Ministry of Communications’ Saral Sanchar Portal, and the application takes about 25 – 30 days to be evaluated.

Step 5- Receiving the WPC ETA certificate

Upon approval, the WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers is issued, signifying adherence to wireless communication regulations. It serves as official recognition of compliance with regulatory standards for radio frequency testing reports, internet connections, and imported equipment. Issued by the WPC wing of the Ministry of Communications, this certification is essential for Bluetooth devices, mobile hotspots, and electronic equipment.

Documents required for Equipment Type Approval

In order to obtain an Equipment Type Approval (ETA), which is the primary compliance for wireless devices, the following documents are required to be submitted for equipment type approval by the business owner or manufacturer of RFID Reader or scanner devices to the Department of Telecommunications for WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers –

Types of WPC Approval and Certifications

Exploring various categories of WPC ETC Certificate for RFID Readers allows an understanding of different types of WPC approval, aiding in determining suitable options for product certification. Evaluating available choices and specific requirements for each type is crucial for making informed decisions.

1. Non-Network License 

This license is applicable to operators and owners of radio frequencies who work on private short-distance or limited frequencies or who work in certain niche areas of communication systems, such as Cable TV Operators, Maritime Mobile Station, Radio paging or textual messages transmission, Aeronautical mobile station etc. This license is required for the purpose of operating a business that falls in the category of non-network category specified by the Department of Telecommunications.

2. Network License

A Network License is provided to companies or network service distributors who provide limited or restricted network services through their radio frequency to a group of customers or subscribers, such as mobile network companies, DTH cable providers, broadband internet, etc. 

Entities who want to provide Broadband Internet services to their customers must obtain an ISP (Internet Service Provider) License from the Ministry of Telecommunications. Furthermore, if someone wants to conduct experiments on hybrid instruments or gadgets of a wireless nature, they can apply for an experimental license from the Wireless Planning and Coordination Wing.

3. Equipment Type Approval

Equipment Type Approval (ETA) is a license or consent provided by the WPC with respect to importing unlicensed frequency-based wireless and Bluetooth devices. ETA is necessary for all kinds of radio-frequency (RF) based, wireless and Bluetooth, mobile, and television network transmission technologies and devices imported into India. However, if the router, modem device or product is manufactured in India and only the RF/wireless or Bluetooth-compliant module is fitted outside, such a finished product does not require any separate WPC ETA certificatefor RFID Readers. 

WPC ETA certificate approval is not required for products and devices either exempted from import licensing requirements to operate in the unlicensed frequency band such as mobile handsets, phones, laptops, mouse, keyboards, CPUs, printers and scanners, headphones, speakers, etc.


Portable scanners and RFID Reader-based devices are gaining a lot of market, especially after the advent of mobile-based payment systems such as Unified Payments Interface in India. RFI

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is WPC?


WPC ETA (Equipment Type Approval) Certificate is a verification, signifying that a particular wireless device producer or manufacturer and its products comply with the standards set by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

2. What does WPC Certification signify in the product quality of RFID Reader Devices?


A WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers signifies that the wireless transponder and transceiver device retrofitted in the RFID Reader is safe, quality-checked, and fit for consumer use in India as well as abroad. Without a valid WPC ETA certification, a digital scanner or RFID reader-producing company would not be able to manufacture or sell its products in the Indian Market.

3. Who is eligible for a WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers?


Foreign manufacturers and distributors of RFID Reader and scanning devices, as well as domestic manufacturers and Importers of such devices, are some of the entities that require a WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers.

4. What is an Equipment Type Approval Certificate (ETA)?


Equipment Type Approval Certificate is a technical examination and approval of the RFID Reader and its built-in transponder or transceiver, verifying that it passes human safety standards and operates in unlicensed frequency bands. It certifies that the product is fit to be sold in India by domestic manufacturers or imported in India by a foreign distributor.

5. What is the Process for Applying for a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Reader?


To apply for a WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers or magnetic code decryption device manufacturing business, the applicant needs to make an online application on the SARALSANCAHR Portal of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and complete the requisite formalities.

6. What is the preferred mode of making a WPC ETA application?


An applicant can apply by making a physical, hard-copy submission with the concerned Regional Licensed Officers (RLOs) and obtaining a WPCETA certificate for RFID Readers from a regional WPC office.

7. What is the cost incurred to apply for a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers?


The Government Cost prescribed for applying for a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers is Rs. 17,500, which includes the Government fees of rs. 10,000, as well as the professional fees of Rs. 7,500.

8. Do RFID Readers and Scanners manufactured in India also require a WPC ETA certificate?


No, If an RFID Reader device has been manufactured in India, and only the wifi router or Bluetooth-compliant module, transponder or transceiver is fitted outside, such a finished product does not require separate WPC ETA certification.

9. How long does it take to receive a WPC ETA Certification for RFID Reader?


It takes about 25-30 days for the WPC officials to examine and assess the application and issue a WPC Certificate after careful examination of the application.

10. Who is a WPC Consultant?


A WPC consultant, like Corpbiz, facilitates the application process applicable to the products and helps an applicant with formalities such as submission to WPC India, getting an RF test from an accredited lab for ETA Approval, submission of mandatory disclosure documents such as IEC certificate and making payment of the Government fees applicable to the existing ETA along with any other miscellaneous application formality in furtherance of obtaining a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers.

11. What is the process to get a WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers?


The process to obtain a WPC ETA certificate for RFID Readers is as follows – Registering on the WPC Online Portal Getting Radio Frequency testing reports Application and Document Submission Paying the Government Fees Receiving the WPC ETA Certificate for RFID Readers after verification

12. Who accredits the testing laboratories for Radio Frequency testing in India?


The National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) is the body that accredits testing laboratories in India.

13. What is the prescribed IS Standard for foreign accredited labs with respect to Radio Frequency testing?


The IS standard for an International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation Lab (ILCA) with respect to Radio Frequency TestingISO/IEC 17025 standards.

14. How can I find a Government-approved laboratory for Radio Frequency testing for my wireless device?


Finding an NABL-accredited and DoT-approved laboratory can be a challenging task. Corpbiz facilitates the application process for you by having the required tests and verifications done from a government-approved laboratory, saving you time, cost, and effort to collect all the requisite compliances.

Read our Article: How To Get A WPC ETA Certificate For Smart Speaker?

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