Bell/Telus PTT over LTE vs. Two Way Radio

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JCWhite94

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So not sure if this is the right area of the site to ask this. But hoping for some answers. I currently have space leased on two wide area networks, and they each have their pro's and con's.

I'm looking to merge all of my communications onto one system, and i'm thinking of getting space on the Bell or Telus PTT over LTE system as it would hopefully offer better portable device coverage vs what I have on the two way radio network.

Does anyone have any experience or use on the network? How does it preform compared to a Mototrbo or Nexedge two way radio network? How is the operation of it? Similar to a two way radio (single button operation, no dialing a PTT channel every time, or menu's you have to go through to initiate a PTT call?)

I'm looking to try and get some user experience reviews on this before I make any choices of which way to go.

Thanks in advance for your advice!
J.
 

VE3RADIO

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There is no data substitute for real two way radio. Call Patricia at mobile business.. She can discuss onqueue nxdn network with you


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JCWhite94

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@VE3RADIO - One of the two way radio networks that I lease space on is OnQue (the other a mototrbo), but I still find that they have poor portable coverage in some of the area's that we operate in frequently (being that we require portables for about 85-90% of what we do, it can become a big issue for us). Thats why i'm looking at the possibility of PTT cellular in hopes of the better portable device coverage.

Whats available for portable repeaters for either that might be able to boost the portable network coverage when we are on these site's?
 

kayn1n32008

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So not sure if this is the right area of the site to ask this. But hoping for some answers. I currently have space leased on two wide area networks, and they each have their pro's and con's.



I'm looking to merge all of my communications onto one system, and i'm thinking of getting space on the Bell or Telus PTT over LTE system as it would hopefully offer better portable device coverage vs what I have on the two way radio network.



Does anyone have any experience or use on the network? How does it preform compared to a Mototrbo or Nexedge two way radio network? How is the operation of it? Similar to a two way radio (single button operation, no dialing a PTT channel every time, or menu's you have to go through to initiate a PTT call?)



I'm looking to try and get some user experience reviews on this before I make any choices of which way to go.



Thanks in advance for your advice!

J.

I can't speak to the quality of PTT over LTE, I have only used 1x PTT back in the day. I do know when there is network congestion, it stumbles, badly. 1X PTT sucked compared to iDEN. Sadly iDEN is gone.

That being said, do understand that in Ontario, Telus 3G/LTE operates on Bell infrastructure. It's the opposite in BC and Alberta.
 

polkaroo

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Quality is fine - but at the end of the day, they're all apps on a phone and behave as such. Maybe try Zello?

I don't like phone-based PTT simply due to poor ergonomics. Poor intelligibility due to tiny speaker and non-dedicated buttons make it difficult to even just quickly turn the volume down. Consumer iDEN phones were bad enough... PTT on Smartphones makes it even worse.

Imagine situations like walking into a quiet office and your radio starts squawking. Even on iDEN handset you'd press Volume Down as fast as you can to shut it up. On a real radio you'd just spin the volume knob down as fast as you can. Need to change talkgroup/contact/channel? Sure, exit your current app, swipe over to the right launcher screen with the app icon, launch app, dig into the menu system... yeah.
 

125

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We use the Telus PTT and are more than happy with the system. Many features like 1 on 1 talk/call or group(s) talk/call are standard and Canada wide coverage(where Bell/Telus have cell coverage). Now its not a direct connect system...you have to "call" the person/group from the menu to start to process and then the units work just like 2 way radios. But if there is more than a 2 min laps in comms the link is dropped and you have to "call" the person or group(s) back. After a while you get used to doing this and think nothing of it. As for coverage I can work in the Niagara gorge in Niagara falls or chill with friends in a basement in Hamilton or even sit out on my dock here in Muskoka or at my brothers place in Edmonton and have coverage. And never do I have to wait for a open slot on the system. As for cost Its less than $20 per month per unit and no time limit or long distance fees its Canada wide. One of the best PTT features is any other people that we work with on a project that also have PTT we can put them in our group so we have comms with outside contractors. Down side to all this is anywhere there is Bell/Telus cell coverage you cant hide from your boss. We did look at the Onque network last spring to replace the PTT but it was hot down by the dealer telling us for our needs and coverage area we could not beat the PTT unless we wanted setup our own network (we used to have a conventional radio system years ago We also used the original PTT 10 years ago and it had issues but the new LTE is flawless.
 

JCWhite94

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@polkaroo - Have you got any experience with the newer Sonim devices, or Kyocera devices that have embedded PTT over LTE? Those are the ones that I'm most interested in at this point due to their ruggedness.

@125 - What devices are you using for this? I've heard from one local retailer for the PTT over LTE it was possible to set a default talk group with the Sonim devices, that just requires for the first attempt to communicate (start of new conversation?), one needs to push the PTT button twice (first push to open the app, second to start conversation? Have you had any experience with this? they were telling me that it's possible on the Sonim Bolt 1550/5560)

We do a lot of special event/festival support (security, logistics, operations), as well as i'm looking at starting a small towing operation which I would be looking to get on the same network for dispatch, and general communication. Because of what we do, I'm hoping to avoid as much device interaction as possible on the pre-communication end, and have something in place similar to a two way radio where it just becomes a single button that needs to be pushed (not too concerned if I can get something similar as mentioned above where to initiate the conversation the person just needs to push the talk button twice)

Thanks for all your help!
J.
 

125

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JCWhite94 said:
@125 - What devices are you using for this? I've heard from one local retailer for the PTT over LTE it was possible to set a default talk group with the Sonim devices, that just requires for the first attempt to communicate (start of new conversation?), one needs to push the PTT button twice (first push to open the app, second to start conversation? Have you had any experience with this? they were telling me that it's possible on the Sonim Bolt 1550/5560)
Yes you call via the PTT...a call list shows up and you click on the person or group(s) you want to connect with and we use the Kyocera DuraXE. Its 1 tough unit seeing as 99% of the time its used for PTT.. The DuraXE I believe is free with a 3 year contract. We upgraded to the Kyocera from the old TDMA earlier this year free of charge.
 
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