If you’re reading this blog post, you likely have the following questions:

                          What’s the difference between a two way radio (walkie talkie) vs cell phone?

                          If everyone has a cell phone, what’s the point of two way radios?

                         Are radios even relevant anymore?

As you will see, two way radios (i.e. walkie talkies) offer a lot of advantages for workplaces compared to cell phones. This blog post will walk you through those advantages and show you how two way radios can benefit you.

Are Two Way Radios Even Relevant Anymore?

Sure, two way radios are the oldest form of communication in the workplace.

And many workplaces do rely on cell phones to communicate. After all, nearly every person owns one.

But, here’s the thing:

There are a lot of problems with using cell phones as your primary communication tool.

Two way radios offer a lot of advantages when it comes to communicating in the workplace.

Now, bring digital two way radios into the equation and there’s simply no contest between the performance of two-way radios and cell phones.

Digital two way radios offer even greater broadcast range, greater voice privacy and increased capacity at a reduced cost. On top of that, they can offer extra-long battery life and integrated data applications like text messaging, GPS location tracking and work order ticket management.

So, are two way radios even relevant anymore? Absolutely.

It’s not surprising, then, that two way radios are actually everywhere. They are used across numerous industries, from manufacturing to hospitals, education, government departments and many more. And as you will see, there are a lot of reasons why this is the case.

walkie talkie vs cell phone

Two Way Radios vs Cell Phone: The Benefits of Two Way Radios (Walkie Talkies)

There is no question that cell phones have their place. But when it comes to workplace settings where reliable communication is key to productivity, efficiency and even safety, cell phones can’t compete.

Here’s why:

  • Greater Coverage and Clarity = Reduced Downtime. One of the problems with cell phones is that they lose signal strength. How many times have you had a phone call drop due to poor reception?

 Cell phones can only operate with an active cell tower, which means they lose reception in both rural and remote areas.

 Given that many industries and job sites need to be able to communicate to complete tasks, businesses regularly face an unnecessary loss of productivity and a loss of revenue when relying on cell phones to communicate.

And the loss of profit is staggering.

Research by IHS Markit found that the average mid-range business loses $1 million a year due to downtime. That works out to be 5 downtime events per month or 27 hours.

Did you know businesses lose $1 million every year because of downtime? How switching from cell phones to two way radios can help.  Click to Tweet!

Inefficiency aside, a lack of communication can be a serious safety issue as well. Public safety, manufacturing, healthcare and education sectors are prime examples of this.

Two way radios, however, aren’t prone to problems like dead zones, network outages or overloaded cell towers like mobile phones are.

On top of this, many two way radios even have built-in audio features like noise cancellation and automatic gain control (this filters out loud background noise while simultaneously adjusting volume).

  • Less Costly 

Cell phones require expensive monthly fees. On top of this, there are various usage fees and roaming charges that quickly add up as well. With two way radios, there’s a one-time upfront fee that’s actually much lower than the price of a cell phone. Rental is an option as well.

  • Greater Durability = More Economical

Two way radios were designed to be durable – even in the toughest of conditions. Some are entirely waterproof.

 Two way radios regularly face drop, shock and vibration tests to ensure maximum durability on the job site, resulting in fewer repairs and replacements. The result? More money in your pocket.

  • Longer Battery Life

The average cell phone doesn’t last much longer than a typical work day. Two way radios have twice the battery power of cell phones, giving you the reliability you need.

  • Better in an Emergency

Reliable communication is imperative in emergency situations. With fast connections, longer battery life and greater durability, two way radios are the only safe choice in emergencies. This is especially true for emergency service workers.

  • Communicate with a Bigger Team

Two way radios offer greater communication capabilities than cell phones, which are limited to one-to-one conversations or one-to-three at most.

Two way radios, however, enable one-to-many communications. In fact, they can be designed to meet your exact communication needs, whether that’s one-to-one, one-to-many or one-to-all communications.

  • Better Network Security

Two way radios operate via a closed network, offering greater security than cell phones, which operate on a public network.

  • Greater Usability = More Efficient

Two way radios were specifically designed for communications. The simplicity of the “Push to Talk” button compared to touch screens on cell phones make two way radio communication much more efficient.

Many of today’s radios even offer programmable features so that you can turn your most used features into one-touch activation.

  • Greater Functionality

Sure, traditional analog radios don’t offer the same functionality as cell phones. But digital two way radios not only make it possible to text but they can also be used for order ticket management and GPS tracking as well.

  • Communicate Safely While Driving

As you will see below, today’s distracted driving laws make cell phones a liability for businesses, especially if you have employees who drive company vehicles. Two way radios safeguard against the risks of distracted driving, both for your employees and your business.

Worried About The Liabilities of Distracted Driving? Two Way Radios Help With That, Too

Do you have employees that drive company vehicles that also use cell phones to communicate? If so, cell phones are a dangerous liability for your business.

While all provinces and territories in Canada have laws in place against driving while using cell phones, you cannot guarantee 100% that employees won’t pick up their cell phone while on the road at some point in their day.

Two way radios safeguard against those risks as many provinces and territories across Canada have exempted two way radios from these laws, which you will see below.

Here is a breakdown:

Additionally, Nova Communications also offers mobile radios (which are mounted to the inside of a vehicle) as well as other safer alternatives for communicating on the road, including Bluetooth headsets and speaker mics.

Wrapping It Up

When it comes to the discussion of “two way radios vs cell phones,” cell phones just can’t compete with the benefits of two way radios. From greater coverage to cost savings to greater efficiency and safety, it’s easy to see why many industries rely on them for their communication needs.

Curious what radio is best for your business? Try our Online Radio Selector

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Recommended Further Reading:


Get reliable communication and reduce your costs this year with two way radios. Nova Communications is Canada’s number one online Motorola dealer. Plus, we’re ISO certified, which means we’re a leader in the industry, and we put our customers first. Call us 24/7 at 1-(877)-721-7070 or contact us online here.

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