My review of the Retevis RT51 and my thoughts on POC radio
If you’re not familiar with POC or (Push to talk Over Cellular) I’m sure you have some questions. I’ll do my best to answer them. This is my first POC radio so I’m still learning all the ins and outs.
Update Oct 31st 2018:
Update: Now the clock on the radio show the US time after upgrading the firmware.
Some main points of this radio
- Does not require a license
- Does not require a repeater or any additional equipment
- Works on 3G/4G LTE either AT&T or T-Mobile networks
- Requires a $10 annual subscription fee per radio
- Requires a SIM card with data plan, 500Mb is plenty
- Comes with software including a dispatching program
- Includes GPS tracking
- Makes group calls and private calls
What is POC?
POC stands for Push to talk Over Cellular. This means it works over the cell phone network. Those of you that have had a Nextel in the past should be familiar with this. This means your range is only limited to cellular coverage. The downside of this is that if you’re in a remote area without cell coverage the radio won’t work. The upside is that as long as you have cell coverage you can easily talk anywhere across the country.
The Future of POC:
- You don’t need any license to operate it.
- There’s absolutely no additional equipment needed.
- The reception is fantastic and it works where cell phones don’t get a strong enough signal.
- Battery life is great.
What I don’t like.
- It requires a subscription to the server for $10 annually.
- It does not have WiFi capability and relies entirely on cellular service.
- You can only talk to radios that are on the same account.
As it stands right now, this radio is pretty limited in what it can do. Once the HAM community starts doing things with POC this will be a must have. I have a feeling this radio will really take off on the commercial side as well. Any company with employees spread over a large area could benefit from this radio. I think anyone that misses the functionality of the old Nextel phones will love these radios.
I plan to post more as I delve into the world of POC radio so stay tuned.
If any question, please feel free to leave message here or contact us on facebook: www.retevis.com/retevis
Here’s a video from Denny of us testing the radio.