I currently manage a commercial paving company and we have been using the Sprint and then Verizon two way radio systems for the past few years. It seems like the service is getting terrible each year. This is why we originally went from sprint/motorola and then to verizon. We were told it was because motorola was phasing out of the business and thus reducing the # of towers. Verizon is probably just as bad now. My question is what other options do we have if we decided to go with something else? Currently we pay per subscription just like a typical cell phone service for each radio. We have about ~35 radios and we travel far…sometimes 40+ miles from the shop. What options do I have?
Thank you in advance!
Ok - there obviously are several options here. The first major question is what is the end goal here?
With the current set up the radios(handsets) are portable would the radios need to function the same way? Or could they be mounted in vehicles(mobiles)?
- A simple repeater set up could be used to achieve this with a base station at the office and vehicle mounted radios in the cab of trucks and equipment.
Do the radios need to be connected to every other radio all the time or would the crews need to communicate locally with the individual groups on job sites?
- Again a repeater can link vehicle radios to the office and then handhelds can link workers with one another on the job sites.
What you will have to consider is the up front cost of purchasing all of this equipment and licensing that is required to run a set up like this. There may be leasing options available where a two way radio company can handle the licensing and set up for you.
Ok, so without really doing an onsite consult here and seeing things first hand using a combination of portable and mobile radios seems like the best option. Portables for labor, and mobile for trucks, with a base station and repeater set up.
If labor at one site needs to contact labor at another then you may require multiple repeaters to make sure you have coverage across the city, but if the trucks are really the only ones who need to communicate across the city they could like you said just jump to another channel/repeater talkaround to communicate with the labor.
All of the commercial grade radios offered by the major players (Motorola, Vertex Standard, Icom, etc.) are capable of this. Things to consider here will be licensing of the frequency you will use, repeater leasing/rental.
With the outdoor application I would recommend a VHF radio set up, if you really just need truck to labor communications on sites (ie: truck to truck may be spotty at best) you can always look to go the way of a MURS set up to avoid the licensing options but you will have to contend with less then great coverage and limited contact truck to truck, and truck to base.
If anything is not clear please feel free to ask and I can explain things more in depth.