What can digital radio systems offer businesses over analogue radio systems?
There are many businesses that still use analogue radio systems, some of which may have been installed well over ten years ago. With this in mind, they may be finding that in many cases these radios are now discontinued by the manufacturer and as a result are paying a significant amount of money repairing old handsets or finding replacements.
If this is the situation businesses are finding themselves in, they may not realise the simple migration path they can take to invest in digital technology today that will provide them with long term benefits in the future.
The benefits of digital radio
Being able to operate two voice channels with a single repeater, and with only one antenna, is one of the key differences between analogue and digital systems. With two digital repeaters, four time slots are possible and is far more cost-effective than a trunked system. XPT Enhanced Pseudo Trunking will also offer the benefits of dynamic channel/slot allocation without the cost of a control channel.
These features provide far greater flexibility when configuring systems and enables different departments to utilise different channels. Alternatively, it’s possible to have a dedicated channel for alarm traffic, for example from a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system monitoring a process line in a manufacturing plant. It could even be used for alarms generated from lone workers such as engineers or maintenance staff that work alone occasionally in remote parts of the plant or factory.
Coverage is improved because digital radio can still produce perfect audio quality even when receiving a very low signal level.
Furthermore, background ‘noise cancelling’ using Digital Mobile Radios (DMR) is incredible.
Even in extremely noisy environments the radios will produce clear voice audio by removing all background noise.
Digital Mobile Radio can link to more advanced and feature-rich applications. It can integrate into existing building or process monitoring systems and have alarms routed to the team that need to address those issues. Staff that work alone can be protected more effectively with GPS location or indoor beacons to locate an injured party on a site map or a specific plant area more easily. Text messaging is possible with digital radios too, which means alarms are responded to more promptly, and the person initiating the action is aware that their emergency has been received.