pdvWireless Launches Two-Way Radio Service in Houston, 3 More Markets to Follow Next Week
Tuesday, June 23, 2015 | Comments

Pacific DataVision (PDV), operating as pdvWireless, commercially launched its two-way radio dispatch service, DispatchPlus, in the Houston market from authorized dealers. The company plans to launch service in three more markets — Dallas, Atlanta and Philadelphia — by June 30.

DispatchPlus is a push-to-talk (PTT) service using digital MOTOTRBO technology from Motorola Solutions. The radio technology is integrated with pdvWireless’ proprietary cloud-based mobile resource management solutions including workforce tracking, status mapping, geofencing and intelligent call prioritization. DispatchPlus enables communications to be sent simultaneously to one or many recipients, whether the recipient is on pdvWireless’ two-way service, a cellphone or at an email address. Monthly pricing is $30 per unit, and customers receive unlimited, wide-area PTT, plus full access to the business solutions.

In Houston, pdvWireless is working with a number of two-way dealers, including BearCom, Houston Communications, Total Safety, Premier GPS, Communications and Emergency Products, Able Infosat Communications and Service Radio. “While we use Houston area dealer resources to assist in such areas as site development, support, installation and maintenance, PDV owns and operates its own infrastructure,” said John C. Pescatore, CEO and president of pdvWireless.

“We are excited to be bringing DispatchPlus to the Houston market and are pleased to report that testing of the network has exceeded our expectations in terms of performance and coverage,” Pescatore said. “Further, for one low monthly price, our service includes not only wide-area PTT but also our cloud-based business solutions. We believe this combination gives us a significant competitive advantage when compared to other commercial two-way radio solutions available in the marketplace.”

The coverage map represents the firm’s initial design, which included significant input from the dealer community to assure that the coverage at launch meets the needs of dispatch centric customers in the Houston area, Pescatore said. “Keep in mind that that we will continue to add coverage based on dealer and customer input,” he said. “We also have the capability and spectrum position to build out additional coverage specifically to meet the needs of larger prospects that might have requirements beyond the initial coverage area.”

Executives declined to provide customer numbers or targets. “Given the quality of our partners, network and the added functionality of DispatchPlus beyond wide-area dispatch, we expect to develop a strong customer base as we ramp up in the market,” said Pescatore. “We have dealer agreements in place with dealer partners and, working with them, we are beginning to build our sales efforts.”

pdvWireless executives, including Morgan O’Brien, said last year that launching a nationwide two-way radio network is the first phase of their business plan. The second phase is to offer a broadband network at 900 MHz. The company acquired all of Sprint’s 900 MHz spectrum licenses — about 6 megahertz nationwide — last September.

pdvWireless and the Enterprise Wireless Alliance (EWA) then filed a petition asking the FCC to realign the 900 MHz band to allow Long Term Evolution (LTE) operations. The petition asks the FCC to reconfigure the 10 megahertz of the 896 – 901 MHz paired with 935 – 940 MHz to allow a 3-megahertz contiguous block for private enterprise broadband (PEBB). The remaining 2 megahertz of spectrum could be used for narrowband PTT services by the band’s many critical infrastructure industry (CII) users.

The FCC is seeking comment on a supplement to the petition filed in May that suggests specific technical rules for operation in the broadband segment, such as emission mask and antenna height and power limits. Comments are due June 29.

“We are excited to be in our first market,” Pescatore said. “Since the decommissioning of the Nextel network, there hasn’t been a nationwide operator dedicated only to businesses. pdvWireless is uniquely positioned to serve that traditional dispatch market that has had limited choices over the last few years. Our dedication and sole focus on business and critical infrastructure companies provides further differentiation beyond our DispatchPlus network, and we’re looking forward to working with the private radio community to fill the need for wide-area dispatch communications and solutions.”

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