Welcome to Ten Four Solutions

We are a Product, Solution & Service provider of;

Two Way Radios

Radio products from Hytera, Motorola, Kenwood & Tait

 

Security & Safety

  • Body Cameras

  • Lone worker, Man Down & Emergency Button Solutions

  • CCTV

 

Additional Communication Solutions

  • VoIP Phone Lines & Systems

  • Mobile Phones & Contracts

  • Audio & Video Conferencing

For a competitive quote please contact one of our friendly sales team on

Tel: 01623 707 818
Email: sales@tenfoursolutions.co.uk

A guide to Two Way Radio

Use & Benefits of Two-Way Radio
  • Two way radio (walkie talkies, depending on your preferred terminology or what you recognise) provides instant communication. You simply push your PTT (push to talk button) and speak into the radio transmitting your message to other radio users instantly
  • Radios can work in areas where there is no mobile phone signal therefore providing vital communication to aid operational efficiency and health & safety
  • If you are not getting the desired coverage required on site then your radio system can be engineered to improve the coverage. In cases where your site increases in size your radio system can be adapted to cope with this
  • No call costs, with radio you don’t get charged for the calls or messages you send and receive
  • Multi users, radio can be interchanged between users / shifts in order to minimise costs
  • Many radios come with features to aid health and safety as standard (Lone worker, man down & emergency button)
  • Radios are a key solution to support Business Continuity, Personnel & Site Safety and Security and Operational Management & Efficiency
Digital or Analogue Radios
  • A digital radio signal (like with your mobile phone) will either be there, or not. As you approach the fringe of radio coverage with a digital radio then the processor inside the radio will process your voice so you can still be clearly heard with no interference or background noise
  • With an analogue radio as you approach the fringe of coverage you will start to get interference as the signal gets weaker so you may still be able to hear that someone is transmitting but may fail to understand what they say
  • One of the benefits of digital radio is better perception of coverage because even as the digital radio starts to approach the fringe of coverage you can still be heard and understood
  • It’s stated that digital offers approx. 15% more coverage compared to an analogue radio
  • The majority of digital radio will offer increased call capacity over analogue products meaning you can have two simultaneous voice calls compared to just one call with analogue
  • Digital radio offers lots of beneficial features such as; flexible calling (one to one, group and all call) text messaging, telephone interconnect and BMS integration
  • Radio manufacturers are starting to phase out their analogue products with some stopping production all together, so wherever possible it is encouraged that you purchase a digital radio and have it working in analogue mode until you’re ready to switch over to digital
Licence Free or Licensed Radios
Licence free
  • Licence free radios as the name suggests don’t require a radio licence issued by Ofcom to operate them (a quick way to check if your existing radio is licence free is try and unscrew the aerial, if it doesn’t and is fixed then you have a licence free radio) this means you can use them straight out of the box
  • A licence free radio has a power output of 0.5w compared to a licensed radio which has power output of 5w
  • Radios typically purchased from a high street shop, normally in twin or multi packs can be classed as hobby / consumer licence free radios. Radios typically purchase from a radio dealer are classed as professional licence free radios
  • Due to the radios being licence free then you may get interference from other licence free radio users
  • With licence free radios if you are not getting the coverage you require then the radios cannot be enhanced or modified to achieve better coverage
  • Licence free radios provide one main function, voice communication they do not offer any additional features as you would find with some licensed radios
  • Licence free radios are available in Analogue and Digital, they are always UHF
Licensed
  • A licensed radio requires a radio licence to be issued by Ofcom (see radio licence section to find out the best radio licence for you)
  • If you’re unsure if your existing radio is a licensed radio then unscrew the aerial, if the can be unscrewed then then you have a licensed radio if not, then your radio is licensed free
  • You can not operate a licence free and licensed radio together and you cannot programme your licensed radio with licence free frequencies, this is illegal
  • A licence radio has the power output of 5w and licensed radios are available in analogue, digital and UHF or VHF
  • Every licensed radio you purchase will need to be programmed before it is sent out to you
  • Licensed radios offer you flexibility, if you’re not getting the radio coverage you need your radio system can be enhanced to improve this. If your business needs change you have a vast number of radios to chose from depending on your requirements that offer lots of features to help with healthy and safety, site efficiencies, BMS integration, etc
  • Licensed radios range from simple push to talk capability through to high tier multi-function radios depending on your requirements
  • If you obtain a site specific radio licence from Ofcom then this should ensure that the possibility of interference from other licensed radio users reduces to almost zero (there may always be that slim chance of interference especially in densely populated areas however Ofcom can look to address that should it occur)
  • A radio licence starts from £75
Business Radio Licensing
Radio licenses are applied for online;
https://www.ofcom.org.uk/manage-your-licence/radiocommunication-licences/business-radio/apply-business-radio
Licence categories:
* Simple Site Licence
* Simple UK Licence
* Suppliers Light Licence
* Technically Assigned Licence
* Area defined
The two most common licenses to apply for are;
Simple UK Licence (previously knows as a UK General Licence) – £75 licence fee valid for 5 years.
  • With this licence you can operate your radios anywhere in the UK
  • Anyone can apply for a Simple UK Licence so that does increase the potential for interference depending on where your radios are being used
  • You have access to a number of UHF ot VHF frequencies within the Simple UK licence
  • You can apply for a Simple UK Licence, which is issued straight after payment – making it a very quick solution
Technically Assigned Licence (can also be called Site Specific Licence) – Fees start from £100 per annum.
  • All technically assigned licence fees are payable annually
  • The licence fee will be calculated on your geographical location and the operational area where you want to use your radios
  • You will need to know what band of radios, UHF or VHF as the licence will be issued with frequencies specific to that band
  • Interference should be virtually zero with a technically assigned licence. If you experience interference or any issues then Ofcom will investigate this
  • A technically assigned licence application can take between 2 – 6 weeks to process so you need to factor in this timescale when thinking about purchasing radios
  • Radios that have been programmed from a technically assigned licence can only be used within the location of what was stated on the licence application. You cannot for example, have radios licensed to be used on a site in Milton Keynes and then use them on a site in Newcastle
  • If you do not have a valid radio licence then you can legally operate your licensed radios
  • Failure to pay your annual licence renewal will result in your licence being revoked which means you are not licensed to use your radios
UHF or VHF
Quick rule of thumb to see what type of radio band you require;
UHF (ultra high frequency) – Indoor applications – the frequency has power to travel through walls making it ideal to “break through” internal walls. Common sites; distribution centre, universities, schools, leisure centres, hospitals.
VHF (very high frequency) – Outdoor applications – the frequency has the capacity to travel distances so is perfect to outdoor events, large estates, agricultural sites, etc.
PTToC– Push to Talk Over Cellular
PTToC uses the data element of the mobile phone networks to communicate.
The benefits of using PTToC is that you can achieve wide area communications at low cost, for example you could have colleagues in Bristol, Birmingham, Newcastle and Edinburgh all having a group call off of their hand held PTToC device. To achieve this with a traditional two way radio would require a lot of infrastructure and expense.
PTToC will only work where there is a mobile phone signal, no signal = no voice comms.
There are many difference devices available that look like a traditional two way radio handset, whilst others look more like a mobile phone. Whichever device you prefer the same push to talk / release to listen functionality is present.
The common price structure for PTToC are
  • Device Cost + Sim Card with Data Allowance + Service Charge
  • Devices can be purchased with one off cost
  • Sim cards can be charged monthly or annually (but it subject to fair usage policy)
  • A service charge which is to connect to the PTToC network is payable annually and is per device.
Devices range from a simple push to talk through handset to those with enhanced functionality such as GPS, Camera, Touchscreen,  Text Messaging & an Emergency button
A point to note is that communication from these devices will only be as good as the mobile phone network in the area.
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