JVCKENWOOD unveils push-to-talk-over-cellular (PoC) plans
SAN ANTONIO—JVCKENWOOD yesterday announced plans to provide a push-to-talk-over-cellular (PoC) offering that includes devices and cellular service, according to a company official speaking at the Wireless Leadership Summit.
David Weber, JVCKENWOOD USA’s national SMR channel manager for enterprise systems, said that the company officials believe a combination of PoC and traditional LMR offerings often can be the best solution for many, particularly SMR operators that want to provide customers with additional coverage
“We don’t see the LMR space shrinking at all,” Weber said during his presentation. “What we see is it shifting in certain areas and expanding in others, using a fusion of PoC and LMR going forward.”
Evidence of these changes is the fact that an increasing number of bids require vendors to provide a hybrid PoC-LMR solution, Weber said.
“We found that it was going to be difficult to get into the PoC market, but—leveraging our expanded dealer base and our JVCKENWOOD brand—we felt that we were able to do it,” he said.
JVCKENWOOD immediately is offering Wi-Fi-enabled devices from Sonim Technologies that have a dedicated push-to-talk button and support a variety of applications, Weber said. Next year, a more comprehensive offering will be available that will leverage LTE service from a carrier—or multiple carriers, depending on the situation—and an interoperability gateway, he said.
“We’ll be providing a gateway link that will use a control station that can marry basically any LMR device into the PoC device, whether it be analog or digital,” Weber said. “Voice streams don’t necessarily have to go to other phones; they can go through the app service to PMR technologies on other types of devices, like DMR or NEXEDGE, through a control station and the gateway that we’ll have.
“The voice quality will be that of a NEXEDGE device, which is very high, as far as digital is concerned in the LMR market.”
But the gateway functionality is not limited to voice, Weber said, noting that the gateway could support applications associated with language translation, workforce automation and emergency interoperability activation.
End users of the LTE-LMR service can specify which carrier they want to use within a geographic location, but they will not need to establish the relationships with the carriers, Weber said.
“All the services you’ll be buying from us, and we’re the ones who are going to be negotiating with those carriers for you to provide that service,” he said. “It will basically be transparent for [the end user].”
In addition to the PoC offerings, JVCKENWOOD USA next year plans to introduce new lower-cost, entry-level LMR radios, Weber said.