Overview of the Walkie Talkie
Before discussing the advantages and disadvantages of Walkie Talkies, I believe it is best to go over a quick overview of exactly what a Walkie Talkie is, as well as its historic and modern day use. Formerly more well known as being a 'handheld transceiver', a Walkie Talkie is a mobile device that allows verbal communication across short distances. Originally developed during World War II -- and was made for communication and command purposes in the armed forces, however in more modern times, its use has become increasingly popular among the emergency services as well as construction sites.
To get a more detailed overview of the modern day Walkie Talkies and their capabilities and features -- then check out the video review just below of the Motorola TLKR T6 Walkie Talkie. (Just Below the Videos are the strengths and weaknesses of Walkie Talkies)
Motorola TLKR T6 Walkie Talkie Review
Advantages of Walkie Talkies
1. Essentially a Free Means of Communication - when it comes to talking on and using a Walkie Talkie it is completely free of use -- there are no monthly contracts, no roaming fees, no license fees etc. Once you have bought the Walkie Talkie and supplied it with the battery power, from there on in you are free to use it as you please.
2. Direct Instant Communication - unlike a cell or mobile phone, there is no need to wait for it to ring and connect -- a walkie talkie provides you with instant and simple (no need to remember numbers etc.) communication, both ways -- to and from.
3. Emergencies and Safety - because of the above feature, walkie talkies are a perfect means of communication device in scenarios that require a plan of action, hence useful in emergency fire situations etc. They are can also be put to practical use on a less severe platform -- in businesses etc.
4. They are Good Bit of Fun (Especially For the Kids) - they are a pretty nifty toy too, especially for kids who are just a bit too young for a mobile, simple and easy to use, they can play all sorts of games with their friends etc.
5. Convenient - in some cases a walkie talkie may simply prove to be more convenient than that of a mobile or cell phone, if the distance is only short and with the need for communication, then you may find you are better off with a walkie talkie than that of a cell phone as you are saving on money.
6. Relatively Cheap - you can buy a decent walkie talkie for a pretty good price as well, averaging around the $40 mark -- you can get your hands on a fairly decent pair. Obviously there are also the more expensive models going up to $600 + that offer features such as a better range (up to 10+ miles) and a clearer clarity.
7. Modern Day Walkie Talkies - no longer are Walkie Talkies heavy and rather ugly to look at -- the modern day walkie talkies are good looking, ergonomic and light -- great for practical every day use.
8. Simple and Easy to Use - another rather obvious positive of a Walkie Talkie is that it is really easy to use, all that is needed to communicate, is to press a single button. Compared to that of a mobile where several (perhaps complicated) interactions are needed in order to get hold of the person you are wanting, hence a Walkie Talkie can prove to be a useful device for those who have mobility issues and for example only really need to get hold of their carer.
Disadvantages of Walkie Talkies
1. Limited By Distance - one of the main drawbacks of Walkie Talkies compared to that of a cell phone is the rather short limited distance that communication can still be viable (around 5 miles on a average Walkie Talkie), although the distance can be furthered with the more expensive models (10 + miles).
2. One at a Time - another negative aspect is that only one person can talk at a time, unlike a phone call where you can have people talking over one another. But, some may see the point, that for a conversation to work, surely you only need one person talking at a time. (Edit: There are more expensive models that allow you to both verbally interact at the same time.)
3. Limited to a Particular Battery Life - like most portable hand-held devices, the walkie talkie is restricted to a limited life time as it is powered via a battery. Although their life will vary from model to model (with the more expensive models having a longer life usually), the standard model can still last a reasonable time -- for around 4 months if used sparingly (however is obviously dependent on the model and the amount of use).
4. 'Tapping In' - the main issue with walkie talkies is that it is reasonably easy for 'tapping in' to be conducted with radio communication, where unwanted people can listen in to you and your friend's conversation. People will be able tune into your conversation.
5. Clarity of Sound - with a lot of the cheaper models there can be 'noise 'and disturbances caught in the conversation through a Walkie Talkie and cause the clarity to be sometimes rather poor.
Summary of the Advantages and Disadvantages of Walkie Talkies
I personally think that the Walkie Talkie is a great little device to have some fun with and can often come in good practical use as well -- for camping trips, construction work, commercial uses etc. and it isn't like that they are too expensive either, there are even businesses tha rent walkie talkies out to you too. As well as you can see from the list of pros and cons of Walkie Talkies above , the downsides of them aren't really too drastic -- you may simply have to be cautious as to what exactly is said over the Walkie Talkies as someone could potentially be listening in. If you have any additional advantages and disadvantages of walkie talkies or any general remarks then I encourage you to please share a comment in the comments box below.