OMACS

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SCPD

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So I read a few articles on it. Looks like mission critical P25 with UnifyVoice. Unitrunker works with it but not sure is DSD+ able to decode Tait Unify Voice. Not sure if the article means its encrypted in whole. Some mention of PTT over cellular so maybe this system will be a scanner listener's worse nightmare. Oklahoma County Sheriff already has a talk group and some others. I hope EDACS system stays. Im worried for the Motorola OKWIN. P25 Unify Voice looks way to promising to city elected officials. It could replace OKWIN.

Not sure if with all these state budget pitfalls it'll be anything at all.
 

plaws

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Some mention of PTT over cellular so maybe this system will be a scanner listener's worse nightmare.
That's what was said about T-Band.
That's what was said about 800 MHz.
That's what was said about trunking.
That's what was said about P25.
That's what was said about DMR.

Don't worry about it until it actually happens.
 

N5TWB

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So I read a few articles on it. Looks like mission critical P25 with UnifyVoice. Unitrunker works with it but not sure is DSD+ able to decode Tait Unify Voice. Not sure if the article means its encrypted in whole. Some mention of PTT over cellular so maybe this system will be a scanner listener's worse nightmare. Oklahoma County Sheriff already has a talk group and some others. I hope EDACS system stays. Im worried for the Motorola OKWIN. P25 Unify Voice looks way to promising to city elected officials. It could replace OKWIN.

Not sure if with all these state budget pitfalls it'll be anything at all.
I'm sure they'd be glad to have you tell them where they're going to get the money to pay for all this pie in the sky. I don't see how it "replaces" OKWIN when they don't even have the $$$$$ to build out OKWIN.
 

SCPD

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I'm sure they'd be glad to have you tell them where they're going to get the money to pay for all this pie in the sky. I don't see how it "replaces" OKWIN when they don't even have the $$$$$ to build out OKWIN.
I seen that Unitrunker and DSD+ sees it as P25 P1 but the OMACS site says P25 P2. I was able to listen to the only 1 active talk group which is OU Medical Police. It wasn't very exciting. I'm starting to get the gist that maybe this is just a new system for medical communications. Still way to early to know.
 

WhatsnOKC

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EDACS going away

EDACS is going away in the next few years. I wouldn't worry about Unify right now. P25 is heading to be the next standard. Then perhaps "Band 14".
 

plaws

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P25 is heading to be the next standard.

APCO's Project 25 started in the 1990s (at least). It's been a standard for a long time. Not everyone got the memo.

To "replace" OKWIN, OMACS would have to overcome significant inertia on the part of departments currently on the former. It would have to offer a department significantly better service or be cheaper. Given how poorly this state is doing economically, it wouldn't have to be much cheaper to overcome the inertia but it would have to be a lot better.
 

testuser

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OMACS...replacement for OKWIN

OKWIN has big problems. They money problems are just the start. Most of the equipment is Quantar based which runs out of support in 2018. If they don't have money to replace that stuff today, replacement isn't going to happen in time to avoid the "radio appreciation day" coming to a site near you in the future.

The biggest problem facing OKWIN is System Governance. The six "soon to be only five system owners" (Edmond, Owasso, Shawnee, State and Tulsa... now that Norman has chosen to go with a Harris system) have no real power to fund the system and they can't agree on how to do it.

For example, Shawnee wanted to charge "per radio/month fees" for users of the system. Shawnee quit programming radios and creating system IDs for any agency not willing to pay them for service on OKWIN....they have an $10MM upgrade to pay for, ya know.

The result? The other agencies in Pott county (CPN, AST and others...) decided to purchase their own Tait P25 system and form the foundation for OMACS. Then, CPN started funding the Pott. County 911 center. Finally, grant money (or somebody...IDK) is paying to reprogram or purchase radios for every agency dispatched by Pott. County 911... Every agency in Pott. County dispatched by the 911 center will be using OMACS.

This means that Shawnee will be in a radio hole all by themselves with new dispatch consoles and a new Motorola $10MM P25 simulcast upgrade paid for by everybody's water bill... which still isn't on the air after three years from the initial purchase. Sorry...my run-on sentence is almost as long as that project is taking...

With problems like that (and I'm just getting started), I think you are looking at the future of public safety radio without OKWIN in Oklahoma. Agencies want a service provider which will listen to them. OKWIN doesn't do that. The State is too busy trying to take care of themselves to worry about anybody else. I am certain that is the real reason Norman went a different direction.

When agencies pay for service, somebody is going to listen and take care of the issues. When agencies can share a talkgroup along with the yearly fee, it becomes much more affordable than a per radio/month charge.

For example, most fire agencies in Oklahoma have a common dispatch for the agencies in a county. If 10 agencies share the same dispatch talkgroup, then the cost is only $100/mo for something that works and problems being solved. Most agencies spend more than that on a new toy or cell phone/data service.

From what I read on the website, it appears that the subscribers to OMACS also get access to a bunch of interoperability talkgroups with their subscription. So...it says to me if you pay for just one talkgroup, you get 16+ for free for tactical use. That's a great deal.

OKWIN was clearly built for day-to-day operations and is oversubscribed. During an emergency, the system is plagued with busies and failures. It doesn't work well for public safety when it is needed most.

I don't think OMACS or any other pay-to-play system needs to be cheaper in order for agencies to use it. It only needs to be better. At this point, it's not hard to be better than a mis-managed system with no money for upgrades.

Look at the agencies which use the pay-for-play system on Oklahoma City's Harris system. Yukon, Warr Acres, Mustang, etc.. are all paying per radio/month fees and they are happy to do it because it works. It works exceedingly well and 99% of the users are happy with it.

When I spoke with a Warr Acres official (not giving names...), they used to budget $0/year for radios and they were unhappy that "unexpected" problems would need to be funded on an emergency basis. Now, Warr Acres spends $45k per year with Oklahoma City and it just works. They don't worry about unexpected problems. They talk with their own agency and all the agencies around them.

So, I don't think that price is the issue. You get what you pay for. OKWIN may be "free" to the end-users. But, they also have a "users group" to let every agency vent about the problems...which never get resolved.

OKWIN is going away. Some company like Harris, Tait, Harris/Tait, E.F. Johnson/Kenwood, PowerTrunk, Cassidian/AirBus, etc... is going to come in and offer an alternative which works. They all have a Pay-for-play P25-as-a-service model. Maybe the State will be smart enough/lucky enough to quit blowing money without an RFP and buy in to it?!? I don't know. But, the day is coming...
 

plaws

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The result? The other agencies in Pott county (CPN, AST and others...) decided to purchase their own Tait P25 system and form the foundation for OMACS. Then, CPN started funding the Pott. County 911 center. Finally, grant money (or somebody...IDK) is paying to reprogram or purchase radios for every agency dispatched by Pott. County 911... Every agency in Pott. County dispatched by the 911 center will be using OMACS.
I wondered about that. CPN, like a lot of other tribes, actually has money. I knew they were involved with OMACS but wondered why the not-Shawnee agencies they dispatch had not yet moved. I guess it's just too soon. :)

Not having inside knowledge (and so not needing to hide behind a generic username) I was under the (apparently mistaken) impression that agencies were paying a per-radio fee for service. That they are not is curious and I guess is part of what leads us to where we are now - nobody wants to pay taxes but everyone complains when the roads are bumpy. Someone has to be the adult and explain the facts of life to them.

Regardless, the power of inertia is strong, so I will believe that there will be a massive change 90 days after it happens.
 
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N5TWB

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OKWIN has big problems. They money problems are just the start. Most of the equipment is Quantar based which runs out of support in 2018. If they don't have money to replace that stuff today, replacement isn't going to happen in time to avoid the "radio appreciation day" coming to a site near you in the future.

The biggest problem facing OKWIN is System Governance. The six "soon to be only five system owners" (Edmond, Owasso, Shawnee, State and Tulsa... now that Norman has chosen to go with a Harris system) have no real power to fund the system and they can't agree on how to do it.

For example, Shawnee wanted to charge "per radio/month fees" for users of the system. Shawnee quit programming radios and creating system IDs for any agency not willing to pay them for service on OKWIN....they have an $10MM upgrade to pay for, ya know.

The result? The other agencies in Pott county (CPN, AST and others...) decided to purchase their own Tait P25 system and form the foundation for OMACS. Then, CPN started funding the Pott. County 911 center. Finally, grant money (or somebody...IDK) is paying to reprogram or purchase radios for every agency dispatched by Pott. County 911... Every agency in Pott. County dispatched by the 911 center will be using OMACS.

This means that Shawnee will be in a radio hole all by themselves with new dispatch consoles and a new Motorola $10MM P25 simulcast upgrade paid for by everybody's water bill... which still isn't on the air after three years from the initial purchase. Sorry...my run-on sentence is almost as long as that project is taking...

With problems like that (and I'm just getting started), I think you are looking at the future of public safety radio without OKWIN in Oklahoma. Agencies want a service provider which will listen to them. OKWIN doesn't do that. The State is too busy trying to take care of themselves to worry about anybody else. I am certain that is the real reason Norman went a different direction.

When agencies pay for service, somebody is going to listen and take care of the issues. When agencies can share a talkgroup along with the yearly fee, it becomes much more affordable than a per radio/month charge.

For example, most fire agencies in Oklahoma have a common dispatch for the agencies in a county. If 10 agencies share the same dispatch talkgroup, then the cost is only $100/mo for something that works and problems being solved. Most agencies spend more than that on a new toy or cell phone/data service.

From what I read on the website, it appears that the subscribers to OMACS also get access to a bunch of interoperability talkgroups with their subscription. So...it says to me if you pay for just one talkgroup, you get 16+ for free for tactical use. That's a great deal.

OKWIN was clearly built for day-to-day operations and is oversubscribed. During an emergency, the system is plagued with busies and failures. It doesn't work well for public safety when it is needed most.

I don't think OMACS or any other pay-to-play system needs to be cheaper in order for agencies to use it. It only needs to be better. At this point, it's not hard to be better than a mis-managed system with no money for upgrades.

Look at the agencies which use the pay-for-play system on Oklahoma City's Harris system. Yukon, Warr Acres, Mustang, etc.. are all paying per radio/month fees and they are happy to do it because it works. It works exceedingly well and 99% of the users are happy with it.

When I spoke with a Warr Acres official (not giving names...), they used to budget $0/year for radios and they were unhappy that "unexpected" problems would need to be funded on an emergency basis. Now, Warr Acres spends $45k per year with Oklahoma City and it just works. They don't worry about unexpected problems. They talk with their own agency and all the agencies around them.

So, I don't think that price is the issue. You get what you pay for. OKWIN may be "free" to the end-users. But, they also have a "users group" to let every agency vent about the problems...which never get resolved.

OKWIN is going away. Some company like Harris, Tait, Harris/Tait, E.F. Johnson/Kenwood, PowerTrunk, Cassidian/AirBus, etc... is going to come in and offer an alternative which works. They all have a Pay-for-play P25-as-a-service model. Maybe the State will be smart enough/lucky enough to quit blowing money without an RFP and buy in to it?!? I don't know. But, the day is coming...
Interesting and informative summary of the larger problems within OKWIN. Just about all of it goes to $$$$ and that is not going away as a central problem to all OK governmental entities.

Recommended reading for all OK forum members!!
 

Turner101

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I would just be happy with a system that all public safety agencies in Oklahoma County can use together. Emsa uses APX on a Smartzone system while OKC FD uses Harris on a ProVoice system. The only way we can talk to each other is through a patched channel which sucks because half of the time the FD doesn't use it. #radioequality lol
 
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