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Why is it taking so long...

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gcopter1

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to implement talk group hold/delay?

IF this is something that can be achieved via firmware update?

Been following this with great interest. However, all I've seen so far are updates to clear some bugs.
Not to bash, mock or belittle the product, but, man, this seems like a no brainer fix to catapult sales among scanner enthusiasts. Tax refund time is here and I for one am looking to spend my money on this device.

Unication David, can you enlighten me?
 

W8VI

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That's a great question that many of us are waiting for an answer. Last I heard the engineers in Taiwan were given a prioritized list with;

1 Solve the P25 Tone notification issues
2. Phase II implementation

Not sure where the talk group hold is on their list but agree that it has had an impact on scanner sales.

But even with no way of currently holding a P25 talk group my G4 is basically all I use now for monitoring our large Ohio MARCS county & state wide system. With no LSM distortion and missing transmissions the G4 has turned out to be an excellent investment compared to the current crop of consumer scanners.

You can program from 1 to 64 talk groups in one of the 8 channel selections. For example, I set my first Zone for local police, channel 1 is District 1, channel 2 is District 2 etc. all the way up to District 5. All police districts are channel 6. Fire Dispatch is Channel 7.
I have about 15 other zones programmed for various counties and needs which makes the need for a hold button less critical but I agree with you it sure would be nice and I would probably purchase another G4.
 

policefreak

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Well one way to get a talkgroup hold/scan is to program the first knob position in the zone with all the channels of interest. Then program each following knob position with a single talkgroup from the system that you may want to hold on. Even if doing this takes up a couple zones, it's pretty convenient.
 

gcopter1

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Back when this Unication thread started, I was very critical of the "secrecy" involved around the pager. At that time, I purchased a Harris P7300 radio to monitor my local PD with simulcast issues. I've got the Harris and everything was bliss, however, with the Harris, if you wanted to hold on to a talk group, you needed a couple of button presses. Fine but, not yet a ONE button push. On top of that, I was unable to re program the radio myself in case things changed with the sites, etc. So, I sold my Harris and am now looking to get a complete solution that enables me to re program as changes come along.


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gcopter1

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Well one way to get a talkgroup hold/scan is to program the first knob position in the zone with all the channels of interest. Then program each following knob position with a single talkgroup from the system that you may want to hold on. Even if doing this takes up a couple zones, it's pretty convenient.


I've got a PD system that has 10 stations, meaning, each station/dispatch is one talk group. Now, each one of those station/dispatch talk groups also have their own car to car talk group. Also, each station/dispatch have their own TAC talk group. So now I'm talking about; 10 stations= 30 talk groups. 30 talk groups between 8 knob positions... I don't know right now how to split those without having an actual tg delay/hold feature. Even if there were a way for me to do that now, I would still want to program a couple more systems that I know the radio is capable of doing but I'm limited by the knob positions?


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W8VI

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I would set up:

Channel 1 = Station 1 TG and it would include Stations 1 Car to Car TG and the Tac TG. You then would have Station 1 Dispatch, Car to Car and TAC all scanning on Channel 1 of 8 available channels..

For the Station with the most traffic you could set up a Zone, lets say a Station 1 Zone, and have Channel 1 for Dispatch, Channel 2 for Car to Car and Channel 3 for TAC. Channel 4 could be all 3 TG's.

There are a lot of options to monitoring your favorite Talk Groups.
 

BenScan

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It definitely pays to think about your programming, and figure out what's really important to you. I would love a hold and skip function. However, the way I have my zones and channel positions makes it possible to focus in on the talkgroups that I want to hear.

My interest is primarily fire, so I tend to put working fire ground channels high on the priority list, with EMS channels lower. I also use the knobs to go from as many as 64 talkgroups in a knob position to as few as 1. I'll have similar knob positions programmed with police as priority, and usually the tac channels are higher priority than the primary dispatch, talk, and info channels. The large regional system that I monitor gets split into different geographic areas of interests as well.
 

gcopter1

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I see. Guess it is a matter of being creative. Something I could eventually achieve once I get the radio in my hands. That's one advantage this pager has; it comes with free programming software, as opposed to, buying a commercial radio such as the Harris. Still, love to see Unication finally end the waiting and speculation with a hard solution. What gets me right now is; why is it so hard to implement. I apologize for trying to over simplify the problem. But, to me, if it is a matter of a FW update, why is is it so damn hard? FW updates seem to be so easy. I'll give you an example. I'm a ham and use a device to communicate with others around the world via a device that uses the internet. In a matter of weeks, they've been able to publish at least three FW updates, like, nothing. Bam-bam-bam, one right after the other. Sure, they're betas, but they work. It would be a matter of times before they're released as finished updates. And this a device that works as a two way radio, the pager is only receive, so, again I apologize for not understanding the nuisances but from back here, it seems oh so simple?
 

BenScan

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I'll leave that to Unication to answer. I'm sure like anything else in the world these days, there are several factors.

You can get the software before you get the radio, if you're interested in getting a headstart.

I see. Guess it is a matter of being creative. Something I could eventually achieve once I get the radio in my hands. That's one advantage this pager has; it comes with free programming software, as opposed to, buying a commercial radio such as the Harris. Still, love to see Unication finally end the waiting and speculation with a hard solution. What gets me right now is; why is it so hard to implement. I apologize for trying to over simplify the problem. But, to me, if it is a matter of a FW update, why is is it so damn hard? FW updates seem to be so easy. I'll give you an example. I'm a ham and use a device to communicate with others around the world via a device that uses the internet. In a matter of weeks, they've been able to publish at least three FW updates, like, nothing. Bam-bam-bam, one right after the other. Sure, they're betas, but they work. It would be a matter of times before they're released as finished updates. And this a device that works as a two way radio, the pager is only receive, so, again I apologize for not understanding the nuisances but from back here, it seems oh so simple?
 

Unication_David

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I see. Guess it is a matter of being creative. Something I could eventually achieve once I get the radio in my hands. That's one advantage this pager has; it comes with free programming software, as opposed to, buying a commercial radio such as the Harris. Still, love to see Unication finally end the waiting and speculation with a hard solution. What gets me right now is; why is it so hard to implement. I apologize for trying to over simplify the problem. But, to me, if it is a matter of a FW update, why is is it so damn hard? FW updates seem to be so easy. I'll give you an example. I'm a ham and use a device to communicate with others around the world via a device that uses the internet. In a matter of weeks, they've been able to publish at least three FW updates, like, nothing. Bam-bam-bam, one right after the other. Sure, they're betas, but they work. It would be a matter of times before they're released as finished updates. And this a device that works as a two way radio, the pager is only receive, so, again I apologize for not understanding the nuisances but from back here, it seems oh so simple?
As I have stated in previous posts we have an open issues/Features list that my superiors present to the engineering team. TG Hold is on that list we must prioritize certain items on this list i.e. specialized alerting protocols and Phase 2 Compatibility. I assure you that it is on the list to be implemented and I will endeavor to keep you updated on the situation.
 

IAmSixNine

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I see. Guess it is a matter of being creative. Something I could eventually achieve once I get the radio in my hands. That's one advantage this pager has; it comes with free programming software, as opposed to, buying a commercial radio such as the Harris. Still, love to see Unication finally end the waiting and speculation with a hard solution. What gets me right now is; why is it so hard to implement. I apologize for trying to over simplify the problem. But, to me, if it is a matter of a FW update, why is is it so damn hard? FW updates seem to be so easy. I'll give you an example. I'm a ham and use a device to communicate with others around the world via a device that uses the internet. In a matter of weeks, they've been able to publish at least three FW updates, like, nothing. Bam-bam-bam, one right after the other. Sure, they're betas, but they work. It would be a matter of times before they're released as finished updates. And this a device that works as a two way radio, the pager is only receive, so, again I apologize for not understanding the nuisances but from back here, it seems oh so simple?
I think you also are forgetting the core feature of this unit is as a public safety pager replacement. Many tone voice pager users are going from vhf analog to trunking systems and dont require a hold feature. This is their original target market. Scanner users are a secondary market. I to have done what BenScan has done and programmed up several channels with scan and many others with channels that i think i will want to listen to as one channel only so in essense i solved my own hold issue.

Also your comparison of updating your ham device is no where near the same as this unit.
Your ham device is owned by many individuals who want to mess with it and tinker with settings.
This device probably has many departments who have issued these and lots of users who dont program them. They are simply end users. So when Unication updates its firmware it has to be right the first time. in some cases lives might be on the line. Hence why they are working on other issues first.
I too would like to see a hold button, but i would also like to see a more user programmable feature like with other commercial radios, where you can program soft buttons to do what you want. But till then i have modified my programming to meet my needs. If and when a hold button comes out then i will change how i program. Till then plan your programming better and make use of more zones and channels. Work with what you have.
 

gcopter1

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I think you also are forgetting the core feature of this unit is as a public safety pager replacement. Many tone voice pager users are going from vhf analog to trunking systems and dont require a hold feature. This is their original target market. Scanner users are a secondary market. I to have done what BenScan has done and programmed up several channels with scan and many others with channels that i think i will want to listen to as one channel only so in essense i solved my own hold issue.

Also your comparison of updating your ham device is no where near the same as this unit.
Your ham device is owned by many individuals who want to mess with it and tinker with settings.
This device probably has many departments who have issued these and lots of users who dont program them. They are simply end users. So when Unication updates its firmware it has to be right the first time. in some cases lives might be on the line. Hence why they are working on other issues first.
I too would like to see a hold button, but i would also like to see a more user programmable feature like with other commercial radios, where you can program soft buttons to do what you want. But till then i have modified my programming to meet my needs. If and when a hold button comes out then i will change how i program. Till then plan your programming better and make use of more zones and channels. Work with what you have.


Yes sir, I'm aware that this is primarily a paging device and to whom it is marketed to. That's very clear to me. My question stemmed from the fact that the pager has been out for a relatively long time and, in my ignorance on how these things work, I compared it to other devices marketed to hams that, admittedly aren't pagers, but because they do transmit and receive, in my mind, are more complex yet manufacturers are cranking out firmware releases for them on a fairly timely basis. Now that I have read David's explanation, I'm a bit more confident they're doing everything they can to accommodate scanner users who are clamoring for a simulcast monitoring solution. The day they do, I'm gonna spread the word and wean people off the Unidens and Whistlers units that have failed us in this problem. Yes, I also do realize that for them is another expense that can drive up costs per unit, but if they sell a radio advertised as capable of monitoring P25 systems, and that they must have been aware that some of these systems are prone to simulcast problems, then, I don't think they weren't diligent enough in putting out a finished product, or at least one that can fully deliver what was promised / advertised. I bit the bullet, sold off all of my scanners and bought a commercial radio that does correctly decode P25, albeit not with full scanning features that we are used to, but for half the price of what these scanners go for do the job. What appeals to me the most is that the Unication come with programming software, free, something that my Harris can't do. When Unication finally adds tg hold / delay, I very much believe they would really hit it out of the ball park.


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IAmSixNine

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Very well said.
I was recently loving my Relm KNG2-P800 but im starting to realize their customer support and technical service is dropping the ball.
They released new firmware and new software a few weeks ago. I have access to both because i purchased the software from them. However their website has not worked properly. I can get the firmware but the new programming software is listed but the link is invalid. They wont send me a link to it via email and tell me they are working on it.
This will be week 3 now. Very disappointing to see this happen.

Its stuff like that which makes me appreciate Unication_David.
 
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The things I want before buying one of these pagers is:

P25 Phase II trunking.
A scan delay with the delay time selectable by the user in the software.
Ability to stop the scan and hold on a talk group.
 

jim202

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I have been in this radio service and consulting work for many years. Some of the vendors just don't seem to care much about their current and future customers. The only way I know of to get some attention is to stop buying their product. Then pass the word around about how slow the company is to resolve any issue.

Do you think the public safety agencies would put up with this mouth service about "it's on the list to get fixed"? Get real and stop buying their product.

I have a number of agencies thinking about these pagers. But at this point all I can say is we keep hearing about this is about to come out and work. I call that smoke and mirrors and dream ware. There is no way I will stick my neck out and say go ahead and go after these units when public safety communications is involved.

Plus they are looking to spend tax payer money. Not a good move for a product that doesn't do what they say it will.
 
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I've been saying this since day 1 that the G4/5 was announced in these forums. These units are at best in beta production. No way would I trust one 9f these units in an ambulance or engine setting.

Yes, they work on LSM and that has been there selling feature. In terms of other features, zilch. Their followers seem to be like Apple phone followers. They believe the G4/5 units are the best thing Ever created. Reality it's not. I'm an Android person that roots and explores alternate methods in my devices. The G4/5 series is not worth the $850 price tag at most I would say $450. Again this is my opinion!

I have an idea for Unication.. Instead of outsourcing your firmware to Taiwan, How about you hire some experts from this forum? I'm pretty sure there are people here that would love to do some freelance work. Heck I'm sure the updates would be done faster.

Gcopter mentioned a device for HAM use, that is the SharkRF by OpenSpot. That device has been praised by EVERYONE. You will not find ANYTHING negative to say about the device or the developer. It is an extremely new device that the people of SharkRF have released numerous updates based on user feedback. Keyword user feedback. Service and commitment like that is what makes a company and device be the best of the best
 
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mharris

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"Talk group hold" has got to be as easy as it gets to write code for. This would likely be solved if Unication made a simple, firm request to implement talk group hold in the next release.

Sounds like someone just needs to tell Taiwan to do it. Taiwan probably has no idea that anyone wants this.
 

fordcobra04

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I've been saying this since day 1 that the G4/5 was announced in these forums. These units are at best in beta production. No way would I trust one 9f these units in an ambulance or engine setting.

Yes, they work on LSM and that has been there selling feature. In terms of other features, zilch. Their followers seem to be like Apple phone followers. They believe the G4/5 units are the best thing Ever created. Reality it's not. I'm an Android person that roots and explores alternate methods in my devices. The G4/5 series is not worth the $850 price tag at most I would say $450. Again this is my opinion!

I have an idea for Unication.. Instead of outsourcing your firmware to Taiwan, How about you hire some experts from this forum? I'm pretty sure there are people here that would love to do some freelance work. Heck I'm sure the updates would be done faster.

Gcopter mentioned a device for HAM use, that is the SharkRF by OpenSpot. That device has been praised by EVERYONE. You will not find ANYTHING negative to say about the device or the developer. It is an extremely new device that the people of SharkRF have released numerous updates based on user feedback. Keyword user feedback. Service and commitment like that is what makes a company and device be the best of the best
Price isnt 850.... It has dropped considerably......

Maximus... Explain why a medic or engine crew would use one of these, please. This is an alerting device ONLY. They have radios in their rigs that they use to talk to dispatch and other units...

The unicaton works much better than any Uniden/GRE scanner.... And the price tag was worth ever penny to me and plenty of other guys like me who dont want to deal with the simulcast issues. It has nothing to do with "thinking that its the best thing ever." Its called, this device works very well, and its more affordable than a Motorola or Relm radio.

And we all know that the device wasn't designed for us. Its a public safety pager FIRST. Not a scanner. Just so happens that it works well as a scanner. Let Unication do what they need to do. You all think that its just as easy as writing some lines of code and compiling it into firmware files. Let them work the bugs out. Because we ALL know that if they rush firmware out and it has bugs in it, certain G4/G5 owners would be complaining about that instead of how long it took for firmware to come out....

Long story short: Stop complaining how long it is taking. The G4/G5 works well for what YOU are using it for. A scanner. Give them time to get the firmware worked out and features added. I will take an extended wait time for bug free firmware over something that is rushed out and is a POS...
 
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Price isnt 850.... It has dropped considerably......

Maximus... Explain why a medic or engine crew would use one of these, please. This is an alerting device ONLY. They have radios in their rigs that they use to talk to dispatch and other units...

And we all know that the device wasn't designed for us. Its a public safety pager FIRST. Not for us..
I stand corrected on the price, my bad! So what are the current price of the G4/5 flavors? Assuming this information is not classified or for your eyes viewing only.

Thank You for enlightening me on what is and isn't on an ambulance or apparatus. I've only been working as a EMT-P now for about 9 years and an EMT-B for 3 years. Let's see if I can add, oh yeah that's only 12 years. I think I know what tools or comms we use.

Although I'm a young cat, but if my memory serves me right. These units are "supposedly" being sold and geared toward folks/departments in "Public Service". To this date, I have NOT been able to find out who or what departments have bought or replaced their Minitors for the G4/5.

As someone that has been in the new era of EMS, these units are pointless and overpriced for what a crew needs. Let's be honest, NO ONE will use these during a shift. We have at LEAST 2 radios with a crew. 1 in the truck or bus and the officer has one. Office personnel don't really care about listening to calls as they don't respond. We don't care what's going on the next county over or 2 counties over. Once you are relieved from your shift, you go home and that's it. Unless a major fire or disaster happens you will not be called in. Off duty is just that, OFF DUTY. Now maybe in a small town with volunteers, that's a different story. They have no choice but to take care of themselves. So yes, my statement from above is complete opposite as the needs for volunteers. My hats go to those men and women as they don't have budgets for fancy toys. This is definitely a"toy" for them. Minitors are tried and true. They are dropped all the time, left in hot or cold places and generally not taken care of. No screens to worry about. Batteries easily swapped out. If they stop working they are replaced simple as that. With budget constraints and Minitors found on eBay, that is the best, cheapest route. Keep in mind that crews also have numeric pagers. Yes, beepers! Can the same be said about the G4/5?

You or Unication are NOT going to convince me that this product will be the next best thing to the Minitor. Very few volunteer departments have P25 systems in place. That's a fact! They even tried a sale campaign on trading in a Minitor for $150 off the $850 G4/5. Was that a successful campaign? How many of those Minitors did Unication receive that were purchased from eBay for $50? You do remember people asking on forums if the Minitors needed to be working order right?

So let's call it what is. This G4/5 has now been a device that has and is trying to replace scanners in this community. Nothing wrong with that. I encourage any company that has an excellent product to "take my money". SharkRF is an excellent device, have my money, gladly paid you. Uniden and whistler do not have an excellent product, so I gave them my money when deep sales happened. Unication doesn't have an excellent product. They have an excellent solution to LSM, that's it.

To close this... I would to like to remind you. I do want to purchase a G4/5 series for scanner use and NOT for work purposes. I do THINK that this product will be the next big thing with scanner hobbyists. The problem that we all know is preventing them propelling to the next level are the known issues and the price point. The price is too high as this point. Fix the issues and sell this device about $450 then you'll have great sales. Until then I'll be happy with my Harris and DSD+. Those work for ME!

FYI.... This reply is not meant for a debate. Debates are pointless with people that have blinders on. People that think there view is the ONLY view. Kind of like Apple vs Android Ford vs Chevy and of course the wonderful Lefty Dems!! Lol
 
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