Given the popularity of voice over internet protocol (VoIP) solutions available to businesses and individuals today, it’s a good bet you are familiar with how much digital technology has impacted our communications. Whether it’s through popular internet-based phone systems such as Skype, or any number of mobile messaging apps that feature calling functionality, it’s possible the traditional landline telephone has been erased from your life altogether. There’s more to communications than just phone calls, however, and for dispatch operators around the world, the benefits of digital radio may not yet be fully understood. Just like its VoIP counterpart, radio over internet protocol (RoIP) has fundamentally altered the efficiency and effectiveness of radio communications.
There’s more to IP connectivity than just phone calls

What is RoIP?

At its core, RoIP is the integration of VoIP technology in two-way radio. Rather than transmitting voice data through traditional means – signals sent through a network of transmission towers and expensive copper lines – RoIP harnesses the power of the internet to send data from one user to another. Offering a cost-effective way to interconnect radio systems and operators together, the technology not only delivers greater reliability than existing radio communications networks, but enhances and adds value thanks to additional features not previously possible. These benefits arise from the ability of digital technology to utilize existing IP infrastructure that makes up both local and wide area networks. Just as VoIP technology has allowed users to communicate with people in any location more easily (and affordably) than ever before, RoIP offers a huge array of benefits to organizations who adopt the solutions.

RoIP Benefit #1: Lower Cost

RoIP is the most cost-effective way to interconnect radio systems and operators, while also enhancing functionality and user experience. This includes:

  1. Integration with existing IP infrastructure (either LAN, WAN or VPN): Removing the need for additional installation and maintenance of the network architecture.
  2. Availability and decreased cost of equipment: Not only is RoIP equipment becoming more accessible and affordable, but often systems can be crafted to include common off-the-shelf hardware like routers and switches.
  3. Leased line replacement: Remove the monthly fees associated with dedicated voice paths offered by telecommunications service providers
  4. Shared resources: Therough the use of an IP gateway with digital radios, protocols can be shared amongst a number of operators removing the need for point-to-point protocols and vocoders at every operator position.
  5. Choice of radio provider: with iteroperability features, you are free to choose the radio manufacturers and protocols that offer the functionality you require and that meet your budget.

Read more about the cost saving benefits of RoIP here.

RoIP Benefit #2: Improve Reliability

Radio network reliability is crucial for mission critical communications making the resilient infrastructure of an IP network one of it’s most important features. With RoIP, networks are no longer subject to a single point of failure, resulting in much less downtime.

RoIP Benefit #3: Increased Productivity

Radio over IP enables organizations to design a radio network infrastructure that suits their needs. This includes:

  • Remote management
  • Centralized configuration & maintenance
  • Centralized command & control
  • Local incident response
  • Regional command centres

 

RoIP Benefit #4: Flexibility

All of these benefits of RoIP have one key thing in common: flexibility. But this flexibility extends much further:

  1. Connecting multiple sites over wide geographical areas
  2. Easily adding additional locations and gateways – including for mobile teams for incident response
  3. Migrating from analog to digital – through using multiple devices on one network.

Learn more about the Flexibility of RoIP here.

RoIP Benefit #5: Interoperability

As a company grows and expands its fleet of devices, radio equipment tends to consist of a number of different devices. Adding new users to the network or replacing damaged equipment can lead to a varied cache of radios from a range of manufacturers. In this scenario, complications can arise about the compatibility of one device’s features with another. However, RoIP allows the interconnection of a mixture of radio types and manufacturers. RoIP for digital radio can bring together the various devices, allowing you access to their features and communicate with all users. It also means you are not limited to a certain range when you are expanding your device population, allowing you to choose the radio manufacturer that offers the functions you need. A RoIP gateway can be added to boost interoperability, allowing your network to access innovative design features, such as location services.

Additional features available through RoIP connectivity

There’s little argument that the benefits of RoIP make it a smart investment for any dispatch operators, but it’s the flexibility and interoperability that makes it a truly revolutionary innovation. Depending on the particular solution that your organization chooses, there are many additional features that can be utilized with RoIP connectivity. By bringing an IP gateway into the dispatch system, for example, operators can connect themselves and anyone else using a PC-based console to multiple types of radio. The DRG range of digital radio gateways allows a variety of digital protocols to be programmed into it, connecting conventional, trunked, open-standard or proprietary radios to the network. With an IP gateway, the need for backroom equipment to connect dispatch consoles and analog radios is also eliminated, meaning less hardware investment is required to deliver top-tier performance.

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