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PMR446 – The Facts

PMR446 – The Facts

PMR446 may sound like a complicated piece of equipment or a major motorway route. But PMR446 is quite simply the licence exempt, short-range radio service that is revolutionising the two-way radio market in the UK. The service, whose products you will probably see in the high street in outlets such as Dixons and Currys is unique in many respects. However its main claim to fame is that consumers such as yourself as well as business users alike can all use the service enabling everyone to keep effectively and efficiently in contact with friends, families and colleagues.

The new service builds upon the foundations of the popular and successful Short-Range Business Radio (SRBR) service, which was restricted to business users. PMR446 will replace this service with SRBR being phased out in 2003.

PMR446 radios offer an effective and low cost communication solution providing general-purpose radio communications over a range of up to 3kms . Affordability is the main benefit, with radios ranging from £80 for consumer market models, to £180 for a commercial quality product. This gives a wide choice for a manager wishing to equip his staff with an economical form of on-site communication or for members of a family who just want to keep in touch over a local area.

The major attraction of PMR446 is that there is no need for a licence and no previous knowledge or experience of radio equipment is necessary. Simplicity is also a keyword as most PMR446 radios have only a few buttons and are therefore very easy to use. Some PMR446 transceivers are small enough to fit comfortably into a trouser pocket or a handbag. The power source of PMR446 equipment can vary. Commercial market models are usually supplied with a Ni-Cd rechargeable pack and charger. However, at the cheaper end of the market ‘AA’ batteries are usually required to operate the product. Accessories are also readily available, with most manufacturers offering a wide range. This allows operators to tailor the equipment to meet specific, individual needs.

Whether you use PMR446 to improve communications for your business or to just keep in touch with your family and friends the benefits are enormous. These include…

• No call charges.
• No licence fee.
• No age restriction
• Almost no running costs (you only have to recharge the batteries.)
• Easy and immediate use.

PMR446 can be used by anyone, anytime and anywhere. There is no need to pass a test and there is no airtime contract. The service may also be used in many other EU countries, without restriction .

Is PMR446 suitable for my business?
Because PMR446 is ‘open-to-all’ the system is not totally secure and may be prone to some interference from other users. Generally PMR446 is best suited to smaller businesses where under 20 employees would need to use radios over a short distance such as within a warehouse or garden centre for example. For larger system, operating over a wide area, with vehicles etc or where privacy is important than a proper, licensed solution PMR (Private Mobile Radio) is preferable.

The Icom IC-F4SR(446) features several useful functions which can help you to guard against interference from other users and help you to form your own 'talkgroups.' The Icom IC-F4SR(446) which allows you to select from over 400 different channel/code combinations. In addition, its auto channel function locates the first available channel, minimising interference with other users. PMR446 products such as the IC-F4SR(446) can improve the efficiency of your company in ways that other communications cannot. Because of its very low cost, every member of staff can be equipped with a PMR446 radio allowing you to keep them informed and help them react quickly and confidently with any situation. This is particularly useful in factories and warehouses where safety is paramount.

PMR446 can save your business time and money. Because the system is radio based, staff can be contacted immediately wherever they are (within approx. 500m). This means no untidy and expensive cables or the need for staff to be positioned at fixed telephone or intercom positions, but ensuring maximum flexibility and minimal installation disruption.

Before you purchase a PMR446 radio you should run through this quick checklist…

• Do I need to communicate with colleagues, friends or subordinates when they are out of earshot?
• Do I want an easy to use system that is effective and reliable?
• Do I need a system that costs little and is great value for money?
• Is there a wide range of accessories available to suit my developing needs?
• Do I need radios that are easy to use?

If you have answered yes to the above questions, then PMR 446 may be the right service for you. PMR446 has a multitude of uses whether you use it to communicate in a harbour, at an airfield or on a long bike ride. Some of PMR446's many applications include…

Access control
Break & lunch patrols
Building sites
Caravan Sites
Crisis control
Crossing patrols
Event management
Hotels & Caterers
Key staff
Leisure Use
Maintenance staff
Neighbourhood Watch
Nursing Homes
On-site security
Poolside safety
Prefect communication
Pubs and clubs
Pupil surveillance
Shopping Centres
Sports Centres

Plus countless other safety, security and general communications uses

Icom & PMR446
Icom who have more than forty years history in producing commercial radios produce two different PMR446 models. The newest radio in the range is the IC-446S, which is small, light, and compact (see enclosed press release.) Although aimed at the consumer market, the product upon its launch has had enquiries from many government organisations and large industrial companies. Because of its build, versatility and its brand name we at Icom feel that the product will provide reliability and durability that the rest of our product range guarantees.

Already in the market place is the IC-F4SR(446). The Icom IC-F4SR(446) is based on its successful SRBR predecessor, renowned as one of the most reliable models available. It is a commercial model rather than a consumer product and therefore inherits solid construction and a range of useful ‘business’ functions such as auto channel selection, paging and group call facilities. It is a durable and reliable radio that has been built to last in tough commercial environments, whilst retaining smart, modern styling. It is supplied with a long-life rechargeable battery, able to deliver 8 hours operation, a mains charger, belt-clip, antenna and comprehensive handbook. It also carries a three-year warranty and, at £169.99 + VAT, represents excellent value for money. A comprehensive range of accessories is also available.

Icom UK Marketing -


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