Many public safety agencies are using SouthernLINC and Nextel Push-to-Talk devices as a supplement to conventional 2-way radios. Over time, the monthly cost associated with “network services” has grown to become a major expense.
At the same time, little or no planning has been addressed toward improving or upgrading traditional 2-way radio systems.
Many public safety users now carry at least three devices – a PTT device for administrative use, a 2-way radio for mission critical use, a cellular phone for reliable wireless phone communications and messaging plus a cellular Air Card for mobile data use. Even though these services are expensive and often redundant, many users are simply letting things slide by rather than developing a coordinated plan for improved communications at less cost. Now these users have an additional element to consider.
The technology used by Sprint (Nextel) is simply no longer efficient or competitive either in terms of voice or data capabilities. This technology (technically known as iDEN) is incapable of handling high-speed data and voice communications have never been on a par with any of the traditional cellular network services. On December 7, 2010 Sprint announced that the Nextel iDEN network would be phased out by 2013. SouthernLINC can be expected to make a similar announcement shortly. The bottom line is that alternatives need to be planned by public safety users and the time to do that planning is NOW!
For additional information on the Sprint/Nextel announcement, see http://radioresourcemag.com/newsArticle.cfm?news_id=6450. For assistance in planning for alternatives, please give us a call at 205.854.2611. We’ve got some money saving efficiency improving ideas that we are ready to share at your convenience. Call us TODAY!