April 2011

Using U.S. Two-Way Radios in Australia

Australian spectrum allocation arrangements are, at their broadest level, embodied in one statutory instrument known as the Australian Radiofrequency Spectrum Plan (ARSP). The Spectrum Plan divides the Australian radio frequency spectrum into a number of frequency bands and specifies the general purposes for which the bands may be used.

In the United States, business band radios operate in UHF frequencies of 450 – 470 MHz and VHF frequencies of 150 – 162 MHz. Both 450 – 470 MHz and 150 – 162 MHz are usable in Australia for various communications purposes which are listed in the ARSP (the Spectrum Plan). A link to the ARSP can be found at this link: http://www.acma.gov.au/webwr/radcomm/frequency_planning/spectrum_plan/aust_rf_spectrum_plan.doc.

To use these radios you would require a license to operate a radiocommunications transmitter in Australia including in the 150 MHz – 162 MHz and 450 MHz – 4 70 MHz sections of the spectrum. Under the Radiocommunications Act 1992 all radiocommunications transmitters in Australia must be licensed. There are 3 types of radiocommunications licenses in Australia, they are Class licenses, Apparatus licenses and Spectrum licenses. More information on these 3 types of licensing can be found at here: http://www.acma.gov.au/WEB/STANDARD/pc=PC_481  Radiocommunications licensing.

Filed under Two-Way Radio Applications, Wireless Callbox by

Permalink Print Comment

Parking Lot Intercom System

Wireless Emergency Call Box

Parking lots are money makers to be sure, but it is imperative to provide good customer service to keep people coming back, which increases your profits from parking revenue.  One way to provide better customer service in lots where an attendant may be available within a mile or two, is to provide a method of communication the customer can use if he or she is having trouble.

Installing wireless call boxes in areas where customers may need assistance enables them to call a parking attendant when they need help. If they are having trouble with a pay station

or automatic parking attendant, having a call box next to the station ensures that they can reach someone if it isn’t working properly.

You could also use these callboxes to provide emergency services to your customers in the event they can’t start their car or there is someone suspicious lurking around the parking lot.

By providing extra services to your parking lot customers through a parking lot intercom system, you’ll ensure that they come back to your parking lot. That leads to increased parking lot revenue!

These wireless callboxes are available at www.IntercomsOnline.com.

Filed under Intercom Applications, Two-Way Radio Applications, Wireless Callbox by

Permalink Print Comment

Intercom Radio System

It used to be that to install an intercom system you had to run wires and all stations were mounted on the wall. These days intercom radios enable you to put stations anywhere you want without having to run wires. The best part of that is that you can be mobile and still take intercom calls.

You can get hand-held two-way radios that communicate with table-top base station intercoms at ranges of several miles under ideal conditions. Intercom radios that use the MURS frequencies do not require an FCC license yet they communicate over long distances. You can even get outdoor wireless radio call boxes and wireless public address units that can communicate with your radio intercom system.

There are two major formats for most intercom radio systems.  They are Ultra High Frequency (UHF) radio and Very High Frequency (VHF) radio. Neither frequency band is inherently better than the other.  They each have their pluses and minuses. Both formats are effective ways to communicate with another person so deciding on the right radio for you depends on your application. The unlicensed MURS frequencies are in the VHF band. See this article for more info: 2-Way Radio Range

Intercom radio systems can be found at www.IntercomsOnline.com

Filed under Intercom Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

Daycare Intercom Systems

A busy daycare needs communication and that’s where a daycare intercom system comes in handy. Security is extremely important so most daycare centers keep their front doors locked. They may have an entry system that allows parents to enter a code to get in, but inevitably someone has problems and can’t get in. Having a door intercom so they can call management solves that problem.

You can get wired or wireless systems that fit this need. The wired system works will if someone is always in the office to receive a call. The wireless system gives management mobility so they can roam the building and still have contact with the front door.

In addition to the front door application, you can place intercoms on the playground so staff can make emergency calls to management as well. You can also place horn speakers around the building to make emergency announcements.

The product experts at IntercomsOnline.com can help you choose an intercom for your daycare.

Filed under Intercom Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

Commercial Intercom System

The first question to ask when looking for a commercial intercom system is whether you need a wireless or a wired system. Can you cost effectively run wires between locations? If not, then you’ll need a wireless system, which may cost a little more for the equipment, but you’ll make up the savings on the installation.

If you can run wires and you need lots of stations, you may want to ask yourself if a phone system would be a wiser choice for your application. If you only need ten stations or less, then perhaps an intercom system makes sense.

Wireless commercial intercoms not only have the benefit of easier installation, but they also give you mobility and portability. You can get fixed base station intercoms that plug in to AC outlets, but they can be used with mobile two-way radios as well so people can move around and still have quick communication. Some systems even give you the ability to communicate up to several miles away.

For commercial applications you want to make sure the equipment is more durable than what is used in residential applications since the equipment will take more abuse. You can purchase and use equipment for residential use, but you may have to replace it more often.

A commercial intercom system gives you instant communication where you need it and can increase productivity. Let the product experts at www.intercomsonline.com help you find the right solution for your commercial needs.

Filed under Intercom Applications, Two-Way Radio Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

Intercom Phone

Quite often a home or business has need for communication but they don’t want to install a complete telephone system for cost reasons. An intercom phone system can often be a lower cost substitute. There are several ways you can approach an intercom phone system depending on whether you need handsets, or if you just want desk or wall mounted intercoms.

A simple wired intercom phone for up to three stations is the handset-to-handset intercom set. It provides a handset that you pick up, press a call button, and can talk to up to two other people. The phones can be battery or AC powered.

If you need an intercom at your front door that someone can use to call you on your inside telephones or even on your cell phone, then then a system that connects to your phone line may be what you need. When someone presses the button on the doorbell phone system intercom, it rings all the phones in your house or business. With a phone intercom, not only does it ring all your internal phones,  but it can also dial several external phone numbers until it finds you. You can then even activate a door lock to let someone in no matter where you are, even from your cell phone.

I you don’t need handsets on your phone intercom and can use either a desk or wall mounted speakers, then there are lots of intercom options for you in wired or wireless intercom systems. You can go to www.IntercomsOnline.com for more information and call one of our product experts to help you out.

Filed under Intercom Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

The Benefits of Commercial Digital Two-Way Radios

Two-way radios since their inception have used analog technology to transmit your voice over the airwaves. But like every other technology, two-way radios are now starting to go digital to take advantage of all the benefits digital offers.

Digital technology brings capabilities that were not possible, at least not cost effectively, on analog radios.

The most requested feature for a two-way radio has been the ability to call a single individual instead of an entire a group. With analog two-way radios the only way to do that was to put individuals on separate channels and if someone wanted to make a call, they had to switch to the channel of the person they wanted to call. But then they had to remember to switch back to their channel or the rest of the group wouldn’t know where to find them.

Not only is this setup impractical, but it also uses too many frequencies, which can be expensive to license. Another reason this doesn’t work is because individuals then lose the ability to call the entire group all at once since everyone is on different channels.

Using digital technology each radio has its own unique multi-digit identification code, which is similar to a telephone number in the world of telephones. When a user wants to call another individual, he or she simply uses the radio’s navigation keys to scroll to the individuals name and select it. The call recipient’s radio receives either an audible or vibrating signal, and their unit then displays the caller’s ID information.

Just like a phone has a call log, so too can a digital two-way radio. Using a scroll list, users can view a recent-calls list showing the source and target of the last transmissions with time and date information. If you miss someone’s call, you can always see who it was from.

In addition to individual calling, you can still call a group of people too. Plus you can define groups so if you don’t want to include everyone, you don’t have to. A public group enables you to call anyone on the same channel as you. A private group is set up by adding users from your contact list (and then cloning this list to other radios via cable or over airwaves). If there are four people on a channel, but you only want three of them in a group, you can set that up. The private groups enable you to have private conversations that won’t be picked up by anyone else who owns the same radio, whereas the public groups can be heard by anyone on that channel.

Another benefit of digital radios is that a single “channel” allows more than one conversation unlike analog which will only allow one. With digital, each channel can be reused while an established transmission is in progress. Some digital radios use frequency-hopping spread-spectrum technology so a channel can use as many as 50 frequencies.

Spread spectrum works by “multiplexing” multiple signals and sending them along different frequencies within the allotted frequency range for a device. Or in other words it splits the spectrum into tiny slices. By spreading a signal across a range of frequencies, it’s possible to carry more transmissions simultaneously. The basic notion is that if the transmission is broken into pieces, each of which is tagged with a code, a receiver that knows the code can reconstruct the message.

Digital radios provide better voice quality and more reliable coverage than a comparable analog radio. With an analog two way radio, everything in the environment that interferes with the signal directly reduces the voice quality on the receiving end. The strength of the signal falls off as the distance increases, but at the same time the background noise level remains the same. The result is a continually degrading voice quality the farther the signal broadcasts.

Digital systems remove noise and they have built-in error-correction techniques that rebuilds a voice transmission to nearly its original fidelity throughout the majority of its coverage area. If the two-way radio receiver can understand the digital voice signal, it can decode it and reproduce voice clearly.

Other Digital 2-Way Radio Features:

• They can operate on a weaker signal to achieve similar range as an analog device. That means longer battery life. A digital radio uses only half the battery power of an analog system for the same wattage.

• They can send and receive short text messages such as such as “I’ll call you back in 5 minutes” to private or group contacts. These radios usually have several pre-programmed notes that can be quickly sent. Some radios even have a mini keyboard attachment that can be used to change,
add additional, or delete these messages.

• Call alerts can be sent to let the recipient know you want to talk to him or her. When you send a call alert, the recipient’s radio emits a series of beeps, or vibrates, and displays your unit name or ID along with the time and date.

• Current digital radios use the 900MHz ISM unlicensed frequencies so no FCC license is required to operate them.

Digital two-way radios can be found at www.IntercomsOnline.com

Filed under Intercom Applications, Two-Way Radio Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

Long-Range Wireless Public Address System With Two-Way Communication

Normally a public address system provides one way communication only.  People who hear a page cannot respond back to the person making the page unless they call using a telephone system. With a long-range wireless PA system there is a way for people to respond back without having to run wires everywhere.

Long-Range Wireless PA System

With the MURS wireless radios there are five unlicensed channels available that can be used to communicate. When we set up a wireless PA system,  the one-way communication to the wireless PA system is done using either a handheld two-way radio or desktop base-station intercom on Channel 1. So a person makes a page by keeping their unit on Channel 1 and pressing the talk button.

If someone wants to respond back, they will need another MURS radio or intercom set on another channel like Channel 2. If they were to use Channel 1 to respond, then they would be broadcasting over the wireless PA system.

The one problem with this setup is that if someone in an office for instance makes a page on Channel 1, and someone responds to a page on Channel 2, the person in the office isn’t going to hear the response since they are still on Channel 1 (the paging channel).

The solution is to have a radio that scans multiple channels.  When someone calls back on Channel 2, the person in the office simply presses the Talk button to respond and their radio automatically locks in on Channel 2 so they can then respond back without having to change channels. Two radios that do this are the MURS Commercial Wireless Intercom or the MURS 110 Commercial Handheld Two-Way Radio . These base station or handheld intercoms will scan all 5 MURS channels so someone making a page never has to change from the paging channel and can still hear replies.

If people who respond to pages from the office don’t need to make pages themselves, they can use the less expensive MURS-Multi-Mile Intercoms and radios to respond back to pages.

These intercoms and long-range wireless pa systems are available at www.IntercomsOnline.com

Filed under Intercom Applications, Two-Way Radio Applications by

Permalink Print Comment

Apartment or Condo Emergency Warning System

In apartment or condo buildings, getting messages out quickly in the event of an emergency can save lives. When management learns of an emergency, going door to door to notify tenants of the event is usually not possible or could not be done quickly enough.

Apartment Wireless PA System

Wireless PA system

The quickest solution is to place a base station intercom in management’s office and Wireless PA speakers throughout the complex. These wireless speakers can receive calls not only from an intercom located in the office, but also from employees with mobile radios who can give on-the-spot emergency updates. The wireless PA units can be placed in hallways, inside common areas, by swimming pools, or anywhere tenants could hear your message.

There is no limit to the number of units that can be used together and there is no FCC license required. Installation can be done quickly in as little as a few hours, and the units can receive messages from long distances.

These Wireless PA units can even automatically broadcast NOAA weather announcements so tenants and management will be aware of approaching dangerous weather events.

Installing a wireless PA system as an Emergency Warning System provides a higher level of safety for tenants of condo or apartment units that most developments do not have so you’ll have a competitive advantage, plus it could prevent a future lawsuit.

These units are available at www.IntercomsOnline.com .

Filed under Intercom Applications by

Permalink Print Comment