10 Reasons Businesses Choose Two-Way Radios Over Smartphones


You may be surprised to know that today’s two-way radios have a significant number of improvements compared to the walkie-talkies of the past.

Two-way radios are no longer bulky and heavy, but sleek and sophisticated tools.

While numerous industries including Public Safety, Utilities and Manufacturing have been using two-way radios for some time, an increasing number of other industries including Property Management, Construction, Hospitality, Retail, Security and many others are also realizing the many benefits that two-way radios have for their businesses.

Here are 10 reasons your business should make the switch to digital two-way radios from cellphones.

Instant Communication

The average time spent on a phone call is two minutes. On the other hand, two-way radio communication is instant. There is no need to dial phone numbers and wait for the signal to go through. As such, conversations that take place via two-way radios are much quicker.This means that you can get back to the task at hand faster.

Talk to Both Individuals and Groups

While cellphones allow you to have one-on-one calls, they don’t allow for group calls to be made. This results in lost productivity as you must spend more time contacting each person individually.

Two-way radios don’t have this problem.

Not only do they allow you to hold private conversations, but you can also talk to many people simultaneously in different talk groups. Now you’re talkin’ teamwork!

Radios are Durable and Rugged

Unlike cellphones, two-way radios are rugged commercial and professional-grade devices that are built to last. Radios also have Ingress Protection (IP) ratings, which means they can be dustproof and fully submersed in water. They are even built to meet military specifications and built to withstand shocks, drops, shakes, vibrations, static and many other harsh situations and environments.

Smartphones are consumer-grade devices and are not built for commercial or industrial use. They can break instantly when dropped or exposed to water, making them costly to replace on a continuous basis.

Radio Total Cost of Ownership is Cheaper

Smartphones can be expensive to buy, and when you factor in monthly plans, fees skyrocket quickly. On the other hand, you only pay once for a two-way radio. More importantly, two-way radios have no monthly recurring fees, which helps you save hundreds of dollars annually.

While most cellphones are discarded after one or two years for the newest model, most users have a two-way radio for at least five years depending on its usage.

Most phones also come with a limited one-year warranty. Two-way radios have warranties which start at two years with the option to purchase additional warranty time.

Additionally, after a radio has reached its end of model life, two-way radios continue to have five years of manufacturer support so replacement batteries and accessories will be available throughout the useful life of your equipment.

Find out how to read the IP rating on your two-way radio.

Two-way Radios Have Clearer Reception and Audio

In loud and noisy environments, such as in manufacturing and construction, workers using smartphones strain themselves to be heard. Two-way radios are built specifically to address this problem. Digital radios are built with audio features to enhance call quality. The noise-cancelling feature ensures that all background noise is suppressed and that you only hear the person on the other end of the call.

If you work in a windy, outdoor environment, wind-porting ensures that you don’t hear the wind.

Lastly, if you are in the coverage zone you will have clear reception no matter where you are without having to worry about a loss of signal quality or dropped calls like you do with cellphones.

Better Coverage Area

Smartphones have dead zones, especially in dense urban cities where there may be too many signals. In the event of an emergency, cellphone towers become overloaded and many calls fail to go through. During these critical times, communication is of utmost importance.

No matter where you are in the coverage area, two-way radios always have near-perfect reception. They also always work in times of emergencies as they do not use satellite towers for their communication signals. Instead, they use their own airwaves – so you can always count on calls made with two-way radios to go through.

You Cannot Use Phones While Driving

Per the new distracted driving laws, drivers caught using a cellphone may be charged anywhere between $490 and up to $1,000 dollars as well as getting moving violation points! If they are caught doing this while on the job or using a company vehicle, the business may also be held liable. Not only is this a costly practice, but it is also a dangerous one for everyone on the road.

Keep your workers safe and focused on the job with mobile two-way radios. The radio microphone can be used while driving so you are not breaking any laws while keeping your eyes on the road.

Longer Battery Life

You cannot do your job if your battery does not work. Unfortunately, the average battery life of a smartphone diminishes quickly, especially if you use it often during the day.

However, two-way radio batteries now work longer than ever before.

The average battery life of some new batteries, including Motorola Solutions IMPRES batteries, now work up to 29 hours!

Click for our free Battery Education Guide to find out how to care for your batteries.

That means that depending on shift length, between two and three workers can use the same radio on a single charge.

The Motorola IMPRES battery system also lets you know what batteries are about to reach end of life, so you know when to replace them.

It also tells you if you are overcharging the battery.

Only Work-approved Applications are Allowed

Smartphones are prone to viruses because you do not know the third parties whose apps you download. They are also susceptible to hacking and spyware. If any of the above happens with a work phone, sensitive company information may be leaked.

Workers are also not as productive when using cellphones as they may use them to play games or make personal calls. Two-way radios don’t have this problem.

Only approved and trusted third party applications can be downloaded, and because they are all work-related you can rest assured that your employees are not distracted at work.

Since you can only talk to other employees on the channel, you also know that personal calls are not being made and your team is focused on the job.

You can also integrate apps including Work Order Tickets so that staff members are instantly notified of any changes or problems.

GPS Tracking allows you to track your fleet so you know where they are always.

Safety Features

If your team works in a dangerous or hazardous environment such as a utilities company, manufacturing plant or petrochemical facility, you need to be prepared in case of a work injury or emergency occurs. Smartphones don’t have the same capacity for safety as two-way radios.

Two-way radios have many safety applications that are available to protect your workforce.

This includes Man Down, which alerts you when a worker has fallen.

The feature does this if the motion center detects a lack of movement, a horizontal radio tilt or both.

If someone is working alone or in a remote location, the Lone Worker feature ensures that they are safe by having them periodically ‘check in’.

If they fail to do so, an alarm notifies response personnel.


These are just some of the benefits your business will gain when you switch to two-way radios as the primary means of communication.

This includes using rugged, durable devices built for commercial and industrial environments as well as a longer battery life and safety features.

Overall, your workforce will be more efficient and safe.

To find out more about how two-way radios can benefit your business, don’t hesitate to contact one of our account managers.

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