How to buy a shared radio network service

Many businesses need two-way radio, but sometimes buying your own system isn’t feasible. So how do you ensure that a network operator has your best interests at heart? Vaughan O’Grady investigates

Two-way radio offers organisations many advantages: one-to-many communication, short call setup time, high levels of availability and resilience, and a host of advanced features in some cases such as location tracking and man-down. However, owning and operating your own wide-area network may not always be the best option, especially for businesses working under OPEX rather than CAPEX models to avoid depreciation and unexpected bills.

Samuel Hunt, director of two-way radio services provider Maxxwave, which owns the UK’s largest independent communications network Ambitalk, says: “Owning and operating your own network is fine, and many utilities insist upon it because most networks do not meet their exacting demands. But the costs are very high, and your average customer would not be able to afford this, so sharing the costs with other users brings it within manageable expectations.”

That is important for Maxxwave’s customer base, described as “everything and anything from blue light ambulances and gritters to buses, taxis, security guards, couriers, traffic wardens and farmers”.

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