LAS VEGAS--Public-safety communications vendor EFJohnson is introducing ES series of Project 25-compliant mobile radios that features better audio and a smooth migration path to P25 for many public-safety users, according to the company.

An extension of the ES portable radio series introduced at the APCO conference last August, the ES mobile will be exhibited during at the International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Like the ES portable, the ES mobile uses the enhanced Project 25 vocoder to deliver significantly improved audio output, said Kathy Broadwell, EFJohnson’s senior product manager for subscriber and accessory products.

“We have a new speaker in this mobile that’s different from the speaker that we’ve used in the past,” Broadwell said during an interview with MRT. “The combination of the new speaker that is of better quality, along with the vocoder, has made the audio on this mobile very much improved and superior in the industry.”

Other features of the ES mobile radio are 64-key dual encryption and the capability to access 864 channels, although it can be configured for fewer channels for customers wanting to save money, Broadwell said. The ES mobile includes over-the-air programming using the same software package that supports the ES portable radios.

In addition, EFJohnson has leveraged its Motorola SmartNet/SmartZone license to integrate operation on those networks into the ES mobile, making the solution ideal for agencies planning a transition from SmartNet/SmartZone to a P25 system, Broadwell said.

“They could buy our radios as a SmartNet/SmartZone radio today, and it could be flashed for P25 capability in the future,” she said. “Or, they could buy our radio today that has both SmartNet/SmartZone and P25 in the radio right now and not use the P25 until they’re ready to turn their system on. It actually makes the migration much easier than swapping out entire radios.”

EFJohnson is currently shipping ES mobile radios that operate in the 700-800 MHz band, and UHF and VHF versions of the product are schedule to ship by mid-year, Broadwell said.

EFJohnson’s other IWCE announcements include several power-oriented accessories, including a new lithium-ion battery, a rapid battery charger that can charge a portable radio battery in an hour, a six-bay charger and a tri-chemistry charger that charges batteries made of lithium ion, nickel metal hydride and nickel cadmium.

In addition, EFJohnson will display its Rapid Response Video-to-Vehicle Starter Kit, which is designed to enable first responders to establish real-time video surveillance within 15 minutes, with the video being transmitted to a command-and-control vehicle via a standards-based wireless mesh network. The solution features 8-hour battery power, hard-drive storage capability for recorded video and a secure link to the command-and-control vehicle, according to EFJ Chairman and CEO Michael Jalbert.

“Completely secure FIPS 140-2 Validated™ equipment prevents eavesdropping by media, terrorists, criminals or hackers and keeps information confidential,” Jalbert said in a prepared statement.