How Firmware Updates Improve Two-Way Radio Performance

Motorola Essential Services program

As we discussed in our previous blog post, Motorola Solutions is launching the Essential Services Program for the MOTOTRBO line starting July 16. However, we noted in the FAQ section that firmware installation or reprogramming is not included in the new offering. This is significant, primarily because of how important radio firmware updates are to the long-term integrity of MOTOTRBO two way radio systems.

Two-way radios qualify as mission-critical and operations-critical resources for organizations.  For emergency first responders, a radio failure in the event of a crisis could prove catastrophic. For commercial businesses, two-way radio downtime could cause disruptions that are potentially expensive, if not dangerous. Industries rely on two-way radio over cellular and other means of communication for its crystal-clear audio, security, resilient infrastructure and ruggedness. The purpose of firmware updates – and other facets of two-way radio maintenance –  is to ensure device functionality won’t fail when it matters most.

It’s therefore vital that you work with a communication technology expert that specializes in the MOTOTRBO line of products. To that end, Day Wireless Systems can facilitate the following benefits for your two-way radios:

Preventative Maintenance

To an extent, firmware updates are a variant of preventative maintenance. A manufacturer such as Motorola is proactive in its search for bugs, security issues and glitches, as well as ways to improve hardware performance. Motorola might then release the fixes, or enhancements, in the form of a firmware upgrade. At this point, users are more or less left to their own devices.  It is not as simple as clicking “update” as you would a cell phone or PC.

Enter Day Wireless Systems. Our techs can install the new firmware for the MOTOTRBO line when deemed necessary. Our technicians can also help with more general preventative maintenance; for example, they can assess current battery life, ensure devices are operating within manufacturer specifications, restore factory settings (if necessary), verify transmission frequencies and much more. All of this will improve the longevity and end user satisfaction of your MOTOTRBO two-way radios.

New Functionality

Finally, firmware can often be used as a way to extend some new functionality to old hardware, or at least ensure that it continues to operate reliably despite its age. Case in point: Motorola spent over $500 million on research and development in 2017. As they ramp up their efforts to introduce new features and functionality to their products, Motorola will release new firmware updates to support these updates.

One potential and exciting use case is interoperability with digital assistants such as Hey Google, Alexa and Siri. In effect, this would allow two-way radio users to issue commands over their handheld devices, which would then be processed by specialized hardware that integrates with a digital assistant. Any infrastructure that also integrates with that assistant (e.g., smart lighting systems, industrial equipment, HVAC systems, alarm systems, etc.) could then be commanded via two-way radio. Needless to say, this type of future-facing functionality could only be enabled through firmware updates.

As radio and digital communication mediums converge into a true unified communication setup, using the most current firmware will be essential for maintaining operational integrity. The Essential Services Package from Motorola gets organizations partway to where they need to be by providing the firmware to keep you current.

Day Wireless Services will take you the rest of the way by helping with the firmware installation and preventative maintenance to keep your operation running smoothly.

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