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Chicomm Blog

Two-Way Radios 101: Key Features and Benefits

Posted by Cathy Kulnig-Dastice on Thursday, September 7, 2023


Two-way radio, walkie-talkie, portable radio, transceiver—whatever you call it, you likely know what it does. At its simplest, a two-way radio is a device that can both send and receive communications via radio waves. They are ideal for use in most work environments: warehouses, factories, schools, and hospitals, as well as for emergency first responders and truck drivers on the move.

Beyond that, two-way radios have a wide range of features. These days, they’re more like computers, with different software and features that can be adapted to your needs. If you want to understand the basics of two-way radios better or are exploring communication options for your team, here's an overview of two-way radios.

Two-way radios are private communication networks

The first thing to know about two-way radios is that they are a closed communication network. Messages are instant and unlikely to encounter interference. They can be used to connect one-to-one or one-to-many, depending on what you need at the moment.

The FCC must license each private radio frequency. Workplaces apply for these licenses after purchasing radios. However, if you work with the team at ChiComm to purchase your two-way radios, we will take care of this for you.

Two-way radios have specific distance parameters

Two-way radios on their own have a range of about a mile and a half. This works well for individual workplaces, but not so much for multiple facilities or when team members are on the road. In these cases, signal amplifiers can be used to increase the range over which the radios work. Mobile signal boosters are also an option.

Two-way radios are durable 

Durability is a necessity when it comes to two-way radios. Different ranges of products are available depending on your needs, and even in the most extreme conditions, it’s likely we can find a solution for you. Two-way radio devices are drop-tested and evaluated for use in extreme heat, extreme cold, dust, deep water, and loud spaces.

The way firefighters use two-way radios is a great example of their durability. These radios must withstand extreme heat but also work in the cold when outside in winter conditions. The radios must also work when exposed to water, for example, when fire sprinklers turn on. They are also designed to stand up to rough handling because firefighters’ bulky gloves and protective gear can make using radios a challenge.

Two-way radios have world-class security

Two-way radios are more secure than cell phones when it comes to your privacy. The messages sent on two-way radio are encrypted, unlike those sent on cell phones. This means only those specifically on your system’s radio frequency can send and receive messages.

This also reduces the likelihood of employees being distracted or confused about who to connect with. Additionally, two-way radios work when cell phone networks are overwhelmed, as they often are in emergencies.

Two-way radios are a versatile tool that enables seamless communication in various work settings, including warehouses, factories, schools, hospitals, emergency responders, and truck drivers on the move. Want to know more about everything to look for when investing in two-way radios? Contact us for a consultation today!

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