Staying Connected in Any Environment: A Comprehensive Guide to Motorola Two-Way Radios

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Published on:

June 8, 2023


"Since its inception in the early 20th century, the two-way radio has stood as one of the most fundamental communication tools for individuals and businesses alike. Unlike traditional one-to-many communication broadcasts, two-way communication solutions allow radio holders to reliably send and receive voice signals to others if operating with the same equipment and on the […]"

Since its inception in the early 20th century, the two-way radio has stood as one of the most fundamental communication tools for individuals and businesses alike. Unlike traditional one-to-many communication broadcasts, two-way communication solutions allow radio holders to reliably send and receive voice signals to others if operating with the same equipment and on the same frequency. Every battery-powered two-way radio is inbuilt with a transmitter/receiver, an antenna that picks up and sends off the radio waves and a speaker that allows the communication receiver to hear and be heard with enhanced communication clarity.

Given the different locations in which these communications may occur, it’s important to understand that two-way radios don’t necessarily fit a one-sized-fit approach. Those in large schools for instance may require longer reaching frequencies to maintain communication across the campus. These requirements may differ for construction workers who are more likely to be on the move in potentially dangerous environments.

Two-way radio providers such as Motorola Solutions offer multiple series of durable and easy-to-use radios that have been tailored for effective use within a variety of different contexts. With this said, what exact features make up the two-way radio? How do you decide which radio to invest in? What should you be looking out for to improve your business communications?

radio sets from Motorola

What is a 2-way radio and how does it work?

It’s important to note that there are many different classifications of two-way radio that each offer unique and tailored benefits for a business.

Tetra vs Trunked

The first element to consider is that radio systems can be either trunked or conventional. While a  conventional radio system provides the user with a single frequency for each radio channel, a terrestrial trunked radio system (tetra) instead utilizes a central controller to dynamically assign radio channels based on demand. Unlike conventional radio systems, trunked systems are fully optimized to negate the channels that are not being used. This allows for more users to use individual channels, making trunked systems more optimised for larger communication groups/ industries. Conventional radio systems on the other hand offer a smaller scale in terms of group communication but can be simpler to set up compared to large-scale trunked systems.

What’s more, for businesses looking to switch from one radio system over to another – perhaps a smaller business scaling up their operations – Motorola’s radio infrastructure offers the perfect solution. The Astro 25 Trunked and Conventional System for instance is a P25 centralised controller that is fully compatible with both trunked and radio systems, making the process of switching radio types far smoother.

DMR vs Analogue Radios

It’s telling that despite our current age of consistently developing technology, the traditional two-way radio market is expected to grow from $7.88 billion as of 2021 to $12.03 billion by 2028. Much of this can be put down to the continued reliability and adaptability of the devices, as well as the uptake in digital radio technology that has been spearheaded by vendors like Motorola Solutions.

While traditional analogue radio systems can be beneficial for wide-area applications where signal and longer latency may otherwise prove troublesome, digital radios widely support data and voice communications. One such example is audio quality. Thanks to the FEC and CRC correction technology and improved spectrum efficiency within DMR systems, digital two-way radios are increasingly adept to a variety of environments like low signal locations – ideal for mission-critical communications that could occur underground or within highly built-up areas. DMR systems like the MOTORBO DP1400 series are fully compatible with legacy analogue systems, making the process of migrating from traditional analogue systems a simple and stress-free process.

Two-Way Radio Frequency Types

The frequency capabilities of each radio also reflect a key consideration when choosing a two-way system for a business. It reflects the specific radio signal that is used to communicate information signals from 1 radio to another, determining the speed, distance, and penetration of available communication. Motorola Solutions offer a wide selection of radios within the Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) and Very High Frequency (VHF) ranges, with both providing unique benefits. Ultra-High Frequency radio signals, for instance, have the benefit of greater signal penetration through walls and structures while Very High Frequency radio signals can travel much further.

Motorola Solutions also offer both licenced and unlicensed radio variations. As the name suggests, licenced radio systems first require a certified licence, but can offer up to 8 times more power than unlicensed radios as well as superior range and uninterrupted secure communication channels. This is ideal for large-scale organisations such as the military and emergency services. In contrast, unlicenced radios are developed with a fixed frequency band and so are ready to use out of the box without a potentially cost intense licence fee.

What industries are two-way radios used in?

With such an expansive range of radio types on the market, two-way radios have unending applications within both business and recreational contexts. If you or your business relies on any element of communication, then there will be a two-way radio for you. Below are just a handful of industries that utilise two-way communication technology.

Emergency Services

Two-way radios represent the quintessential tool for any individual operating within mission-critical industries such as emergency services. They ensure that a workforce can instantly communicate with one another and respond as necessary to the quickly developing situation. Urgent information given to a central dispatcher can be quickly communicated to the different teams operating on the front line, allowing for increased safety and risk mitigation.

Hospitality and Retail

Walkie-talkies are also frequently used in common and lower-danger industry settings such as hospitality and retail. Given the fast operation and high customer turnover within these industries, fast and effective communication between staff members is fundamental. It ensures that staff can meet the adapting demands of different customers to improve their experience and encourage continued custom. Two-way radios are similarly essential in these industries for security personnel to maintain the safety of customers and staff alike in the case of any potential threats to safety.

Oil and Gas

Two-way radio communication also provides an instant solution for those industries based within less conventional working locations. An industry like oil & gas for example may often operate within offshore and potentially dangerous locations, outside the boundary of phone or internet signals. Two-way technology facilitates communication in these environments and thanks to the instant and efficient signals, it ensures that worker safety can be maintained throughout the operation.

The Verdict

Thanks to enhanced clarity, durability, reliability, ease of use, and plenty more, it’s clear that a two-way radio offers the most optimal solution for business operations reliant on effective communication. By following this guide, the process of navigating the market and finding the ideal radio tool will become a much simpler process.

Minerva is proudly partnered as a Motorola Solutions vendor and prides itself on our technical expertise and customer service quality. If you have more questions about two-way radios and how they can benefit your business, then get in touch with our friendly team today. We’ll be happy to assist you.