Two-Way Radio and Digital Communications integrated...
So, what is digital communication?
In brief Digital communication is the use of online tools like email, social media messaging and texting to reach other individuals or a specific audience with the end goal being to share a message. Even something as simple as reading the text on a webpage can be considered digital communication. Many businesses, organizations, and industries have adapted to the changing environment where digital communication has replaced not just older forms of communication like writing and sending letters, but face-to-face communication as well.
Digital communication should be concise and get the point across early just like one would anticipate when using two-way radio communications. The Digital world has a number of advantages, one being that the user can see one another when making use of Virtual communication for example. Body language can help to relay a message when communication in English, (which is not always the users first language), has the potential of leading to possible implications such as ambiguity and confusion.
So, is it time for sectors such as the Aviation, Marine and General industry that already use two-way radio as part of their communications, to substitute, or include Digital technology into their Operations? To substitute may involve too many regulatory changes which have evolved over a number of years so from the outset it appears that `add-on` would be more feasible.
Users could communicate with the operator digitally which would not influence the two-way radio communications set as Primary. They would now be able to relay messages digitally when unsure as to how to transmit their intentions on frequency. The Operator in turn could ask the user to send a text message to explain their transmission whenever doubt existed on frequency. Conditions such as accent could now be replaced by text or `face to face` technology that would replace any possible doubt from ever existing.
One can quickly determine from this proposal that a resounding pro would be the inclusion of additional communication channels made available to everyone involved. This however would need to be regulated. In other words, maintain two - way radio frequency as primary communication and use digital technology to oversee additional tasks. It could also mean that additional staff would be required to man the digital inclusion and feed this information in turn to the primary operator. After all, the operator needs to maintain focus during all two way radio communications, and it is a fact that we all become distracted from our principle intention when texting on our cellphones for example.
Maybe it is time for regulators to look at the inclusion of Digital technology to replace outdated communication processes such as:
• Flag Signals
• Flashing Lights
• Morse Code
Plus, ongoing issues such as:
• Language barriers
• Radio frustrations
And implement a procedure that sees two technologies integrated to produce a system that meets the ever-changing needs and requirements of the 20th century.