Updated: Jan 14
Choosing Between Two Popular Options for Instant Communication
Choosing Between Two Way Radio or PoC (PTT Over Cellular)
Since it was first introduced in 1930, push-to-talk communication has been a critical part of mobile workers, particularly in business or mission-critical settings. The most renowned and widely-used PTT communication is supported by LMR (Land Mobile Radio) networks that makes it robust, reliable, and most importantly, real-time. It makes LMR PTT, or also familiar with two-ways radio, the right choice for use in emergency situations.
But just like the other point-to-point (PTP) telecommunication tools, there several downsides of the two-way radio.
This is by far the most obvious drawback of the two way radio system.
A repeater will extend the coverage area of two-ways radio system. However, that means users have to spend additional cost to cover the device. The number of repeaters will depend on the size of the area that wants to be covered, which means the larger the area, the more repeaters required.
Channel allocation inefficiency issue
The conventional two way radio system only allows a specific channel to be allocated to a specific user or group of users. So, channel one might be extremely active, channel two moderately active, channel three can be idle most of the time with just 2 conversations per month. Regardless, you can’t assign channel three to anyone who desperately needs a channel to communicate with a user or a group of people.
That means the number of channels you need can be as many as the number of users you have. This might be perfect for small organizations with small number of users, but it doesn’t make sense for the large organizations.
Solution: Trunked Radio System
With this system, not all users or groups who need to communicate in a channel will do so at the same time. Thus, there can be more users or groups than the number of channels in the system. It is often called computer-controlled or computer-aided system since the channel allocation is done by a computer called the control channel.
All the above issues of two-way radio create a huge opportunity for a new technology to fill in the gap, in this case, is the mobile technology.
With today’s rapid development of wireless networks and mobile technology advancement, it has made possible for PTT communication to be done on smartphones over cellular networks, which is known as PTT over Cellular (PoC) or more familiar as walkie-talkie app. It offers many benefits that are not available with two-ways radio and even the capability of integration with the two-ways radio.
✔ Wide coverage area - inside and outside a building
With walkie-talkie app, the area of coverage seldom becomes an issue with the many cellular towers existing on almost everywhere. A bad connection inside a building is covered with the existence of Wi-Fi network, whose speed is very impressive these days.
✔ A huge number of channels possible
The number of channels can be huge since PTT Apps, like VoicePing, use the cloud to save the data. Thus, channel allocation is never an issue.
Having said that, the future possibility of walkie talkie app is endless. That’s why its user base is predicted to grow massively. In the US alone, walkie-talkie app users are expected to grow from over 3 million active users in 2015 to almost 6 million users by 2019.
Function-wise, each of these instant communication methods has its own benefits and limitations. You can see the side-by-side comparison here. Moreover, both two- ways radio and walkie talkie app are systems that comprise of several factors, as seen in the above Infographic.
Despite having limited coverage, the Infographic shows that two-ways radio’s dedicated LMR can be more reliable as it has less chance of being overloaded than the commercial cellular network.
However, walkie-talkie app stands out with its versatility and flexibility. It offers more features beyond what two-way radio can offer, such as multimedia messaging (text and pictures), location tracking, and collaboration with other mobile device-based business apps. This is often becoming the reasons why two-way radio’s users choose to upgrade to walkie talkie app these days.
Despite all the benefits and possibilities PoC has compared to two-ways radio, not all two way radio users have the confidence to switch completely to walkie talkie app. Whereas, some others choose to embrace what PoC has to offer. It has lead to a situation where communication between these systems is necessary. And that is where a bridge plays its role. A bridge interconnects two-way radio to a walkie-talkie app and vice versa.
As one of the most reliable walkie talkie apps in the market, VoicePing ensures its users to get the best walkie-talkie app experience with the highest speed and the lowest latency compared to the others. It tackles the crucial issue that says walkie talkie app is not as real-time as the two-ways radio.
VoicePing is also equipped with a dedicated headset that works well with all its features. Instant communication with walkie-talkie app becomes way easier with VoicePing.
In addition to the features PoC/walkie talkie app has that two-way radio doesn’t, PoC’s potential of development in the future is almost limitless in all aspects. So, if you are concern about securing the future with the latest technology for your business, walkie talkie app is indeed the best option for you.
For a more detailed comparison between two-way radio and walkie talkie app/PoC, download here.