We know what you’re thinking. People actually still use two way radios?
Even in the world of smartphones in every pocket, two way radios are still the preferred method of communication by professionals in business, industrial, and government industries.
Cell phones are great for consumers and the common person, on an everyday basis. However, there’s a reason two way radios are used by a vast majority of people inside the business and industrial professions.
In most cases, the two technologies are not actually direct competitors at all.
We will explore the advantages and disadvantages of each and dive into why two way radio communication just may be the smarter, more cost-effective choice for your business or organization.
VEI Communications is here to help you figure out what your business or organization needs and find a custom solution.
Let’s get started.
Understanding the Differences Between Two Way Radios & Cell Phones
The convenience of the typical cell phone can’t be argued against. It’s basically a computer in your hand. It can send a photo, text a message, edit a document, and dial a number to speak to anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world.
A cell phone is a one-to-one communication device, whereas two way radios are one-to-many communication devices.
This means cellphones are used for individual and personal calls, whereas two way radios are used primarily as a communications tool for an organization or group of people.
Of course, we understand there is such a thing as a conference call or group text, but no group communication on a cell phone is more efficient than a two way radio.
There is an old saying about using the right tool for the right job.
In the case of cell phones and two way radios, this is especially true. Each has its place, to be sure.
A Quick Comparison of Two Way Radios vs. Cell Phones
- No limited range – call anyone from anywhere
- Monthly fees and data plans can be expensive
- Subject to service provided by an active cell tower nearby or your charges increase significantly for roaming
- Sometimes can be difficult to use while wearing gloves; not always a user-friendly interface
- No license necessary; anyone can own one and use one
- High roaming charges when away from the area of service
- Fragile, breakable, and subject to water damage
- May not work in rural or remote locations
Two Way Radios
- Doesn’t work long distance
- User-friendly, simple to use
- Completely durable and weather-resistant
- Less expensive than cell phones
- No monthly service or roaming charges apply
- May require an FCC license
- Works great in remote or rural locations
- Multiple calls are simple by pressing the PTT (press to talk) button for a group conversation
- Instant connection; no wait time or busy signal ever
So, for people or organizations in education, manufacturing, healthcare, government, or public safety, just for ease, two way radio communication seems like the best option. But when you begin to explore the many benefits of two way radios, you’ll see there’s simply no contest.
13 Benefits of Two Way Radios for Commercial & Industrial Use
When your focus is getting the job done, you don’t have time to download the app or wait for the other person to answer the phone. You need instant, easy, and clear communication.
This is why two way radio systems have many benefits over a cell phone.
Professional two-way radio communication provides an effective and reliable solution customized for each business.
From longer battery life to lower cost of ownership, here are 13 benefits to consider when deciding between cell phones or two-way radios.
1. Longer Battery Life
Two way radios carry a significantly longer battery life than cell phones and have portable batteries that you can pop in to ensure communication in emergency power outages or extreme circumstances.
2. Better Network Security
You don’t have to worry about a breach in security, a phone being bugged, or a breakdown in network coverage. Two way radios are the best way of safe, secure communication.
3. Improved Call Quality & Coverage
Oftentimes, you don’t get reliable cell service when you’re working on a construction site, in remote areas, or on the road. With two way radios, you have clear communication and quality sound anywhere, anytime.
4. Leads to Reduced Down Time
No more waiting for your phone to be fixed, trying to get service, getting lost on social media apps, or blaming a lost call on bad timing. Now you can focus on the job at hand instead of your cell phone problems.
5. Noise-Canceling Technology
With advanced noise-canceling technology, background noise is eliminated, giving you clear communication no matter where you are.
6. Superior Durability
You can drop, drag, dunk or spill a two-way radio and they are virtually indestructible.
7. More Practical User Interface
It’s not always realistic to use a touch screen when you’re on the job. Two-way radios are simplistic and easy for anyone to use.
8. Enhanced Communication Capabilities
Now you can communicate with the entire team instantly because you don’t have to wait for a connection. Just push, talk, done.
9. Better Suited for Emergency Situations
You don’t have to worry about getting a busy signal, someone not picking up their phone, or losing service when you are in an emergency situation.
10. Cost Savings
No monthly bill. Need we say more?
11. Independent Network
You are no longer reliant upon a cell phone tower or your provider’s network of coverage. Two way radios function on a completely separate system. This also means they still work during network outages.
12. Advanced Notifications
Yes, you can still use your two-way radio to receive alarms, work tickets, and monitor lone workers on job sites.
13. Less Distracted Driving
All interstate truck and bus drivers are banned by federal law from any handheld cell phone use while behind the wheel. This means it’s nearly impossible to get in touch with drivers.
However, by using two-way radios, drivers don’t have to hold, dial, or reach for a mobile phone in their vehicle. FleetTalk services through VEI are available for this exact purpose. Now you can communicate with your entire fleet instantly, clearly, and without violating any federal cell phone laws.
FAQs About Two Way Radios & Cell Phones
There is a clear difference between two-way radios and cell phones. Both are portable means of communication. The similarities end there.
The how and why they are used in certain situations is the key difference.
- Can you use your phone as a two way radio?
- While there are some apps that may allow you to use your cell phone in a way that mimics a walkie talkie or two way radio, they almost always require either Wi-Fi or a network connection. Without either of those two, the simple answer is no.
- Are two way radios actually secure?
- Yes. Commercial two way radios are widely used because they have a dedicated frequency and use encrypted communication, making them secure lines of communication.
- How do I get an FCC License to use two way radios?
- With the help of VEI Communications, obtaining your FCC License has never been easier. Contact us for more information or visit our FCC License page to get started.
Custom Solutions With VEI Communications
Ready to make the switch and invest in two way radio communication for your business?
We’ve given you the facts about two way radios vs. cell phones, and if you’re ready to find the right solution for your organization, we’re here, ready to help.
VEI Communications has five different locations, in Louisville, KY, Russellville, KY, Vincennes, IN, and Evansville, IN, and Darlington, SC. We are proud to provide service to those within a 60 mile radius of each location.
For more information, or to learn more about two way radios vs. cell phones, give us a call today.