Radio dealerships: threats and opportunities

Giving the customer what they want even if they don’t yet know it, is part and parcel of being a radio dealership. Sam Fenwick explores how their role has changed and the current threats and opportunities

Dealerships are a key part of the PMR supply chain, providing the link between end users and equipment manufacturers. The pace of technological progress has been breath-taking over the past few years. With the migration to digital still underway and the beginnings of PMR/cellular convergence, how have things changed for dealerships’ customers?

“I think the industry has come full circle,” says Karl Beach, director at SFL Mobile Radio. “Millions of users jumped ship to cellular back in the 1990s. Over the last decade they’ve started coming back because radio has its advantages: push-to-talk, high power, clarity, digital options, and poor cellular coverage in rural areas.”

“Clients require more than just simple PTT now,” says Steve Luscombe, director at DCRS. “A lot of customers are aware that a radio is no longer just a communication device.

“With the applications that are available our clients can do a lot more with digital two-way radios,” he adds. “We’re being asked more and more to link the radios into building management systems or fire alarm systems, and we’re getting requests to make the radio more of a communication tool where it can receive messages from third-party applications and people can operate devices from the radio rather than having to go back to a control room.”

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