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Two Way Radios - Licence Free VS Licensed-Radio-Shop UK

Two Way Radios - Licence Free VS Licensed

Many businesses struggle to understand what the difference is between Licence Free and Licensed two way radios and when it comes to choosing they have no idea where to begin.

We are here to offer Free help and support to ensure you get the solution you need which is fit for your business whatever industry you work in.

FREE PHONE: 0800 774 7147

Licence Free Walkie Talkie Radios

Licence Free radios are a low-cost solution often used in the retail industry. They are a very easy to use solution for staff to communicate with each other on the shop floor.

The radios come pre-programmed using the PMR446 frequencies which means you can use them without any additional cost. They are designed to work straight out of the box all you must do is charge them up and away you go.

The main downside to Licence Free is other users can listen in and often shops must change channel as other people are using it. This can become frustrating and with the power being restricted to 0.5W if you have multiple floors or back rooms reception can be poor.

Please also note that NOT all Licence Free radios work with each other, different manufacturers have tweaked the channels or use slightly different frequencies within the PMR446 frequency band. It is biggest mistake most people make, it is a 446 radio so it must be programmed the same; If it falls within 446 frequencies….unfortunately not! .

This results in most businesses sticking to the brand after their initial purchase.

The most popular radios on the market are the following: 

Motorola XT420

Motorola XT420 Walkie Talkie

Great radio works straight out of the box turn on the radio and select the channel and away you go. The radio has an easy to use Push to Talk (PTT) button on the side and works as described.  

Motorola XT460 

Motorola XT460 Walkie Talkie

The Motorola XT460 main benefit it the channel display which makes it easy to the eye, so you can ensure you are on the correct channel. The display also shows the battery life left on the radio.

Hytera BD3505LF

Hytera BD305LF Radio

Very New to the market, great radio and works in both analogue or digital mode. In digital mode you get a clearer audio conversation with the other user as well as a high performance both in battery life and signal reception.

Radio Shop have ensured all our radios come ready to work with any of the major Licence Free radio manufacturers including Motorola, Kenwood and Icom. This means the end user is not tied down to a manufacturer and can swap out their existing fleet in a commercially viable manner.

Licensed Radios

"It's too complicated, costly and I have no idea where to begin?????"

Wrong! It is just the fact no one is aware of how simple it can be if you speak to the right people.

We will start with the main benefits of Licensed two way radio.

  • More power - Licensed radios come with more power ensuring you get the coverage you need for your business. If a building has multiple floors and thick walls Licence Free will not do the job.
  • More Robust - The top branded Licenced radios are more robust better dust and waterproof rating than Licence Free.
  • Tailored to you - There is a variety of ranges from different manufacturer's which have different features and benefits depending on what you need to achieve.
  • Accessories - The major manufacturers have a huge range of accessories for their licenced radios ensuring you can get Headsets, Earpieces, Remote Speaker Mics, Batteries & Carry Cases to fit your needs.
  • 24 Months Warranty - Licensed radios come with 24 Months Warranty and from Radio Shop we offer a hassle free service, if you purchase from us and have any Manufacturing issues or faults with the radio we will swap it out straight away, hassle-free with free delivery.

The next point people are concerned with cost. Well for a Simple UK Licence from Ofcom it will only cost £75.

The added bonus is that £75 last for 5 Years and you can use your radios anywhere in the UK with an unlimited amount of radios. £15 per a year!!

Why else would I want Licensed radios?

Maybe you run a professional company and you don't want anybody else listening or using your channels. Imagine having a mobile which anyone could listen into....would you still use it??

Thats what happens with Licence Free Radios.

Digital Licensed radios also offer additonal features:

  • Privacy - Basic Encryption is available from the mid-range radios upwards ensuring even if someone did use your frequencies you could still use a unique code to ensure the message could not be heard. Ideal for the Security Industry.
  • Clearer Audio - Digital filter eliminates background noise
  • Battery Life - 40% longer life which is ideal for long work shifts 
  • Increased Capacity - 2 simultaneous channels can operate on the same frequency without affecting each other. Saves money on frequencies required to operate affectively.
  • Enhanced Digital Calling and Signalling - You can make All Calls, Private Calls and Group Calls on the same channels.
  • Integrated Data Applications - Digital Radios are available with GPS chips so they can be tracked on a network, you can also disable, Stun and Kill the radios if they are lost.

For more information take a look at our Why Digital? page.

Cost - Licence Free Radio Compared to Licensed Radios

Licence Free Radios are cheaper, but entry level digital licenced radios are only slightly more expensive than the most popular Licence Free.

Also remember Radio Shop offer finance and we have some great offers ensuring you get the most for your money.

FREE PHONE: 0800 774 7147

We also offer Package & Complete Package deals

Package Deals - Making it easier for that all in one purchase. Each deal comes with radios, batteries, antennas, belt clip and a 6 port multi-charging unit 

Complete Package - Same as package deal but the radios are also supplied with earpieces, programming lead & programming software (via download).

Or you could always hire radios from Radio Shop with a low weekly, monthly cost

The most popular Licensed two way radios we sell are:

Motorola DP4400e Two Way Radio

Motorola DP4400e Package Deals

Recently re designed the 'e range' Motorola DP4400e is designed for skilled professionals who refuse to compromise. It offers 28 hours battery life with the new 3000 mAh battery.

The Motorola DP4400e is IP68 water and dust proof ensuring it can be used in any environment. The DP4400e radio is built to military standards so it can be dropped without having to worry about it breaking.

The Motorola DP4400e also come with enhanced privacy which is a 40 bit encryption which easy to configure to ensure your channel is your channel.

Hytera PD705LT Two Way Radio


Hytera PD705LT


The Hytera PD705LT is well built, robust and will last. It is easy to use and is waterproof with a IP67 rating. The PD705LT has superior voice quality and uses Pseudo trunking.

The radio is supplied with 24 Months Manufacturer's Warranty and the battery will last 40% longer than your analogue radio.

The radio is very popular in the Security and Construction Industries due to it being so durable.

It offers reliable, secure and instant communications no matter what the environment.

Why Buy From Radio-Shop UK? 

Stuck, Confused, Unsure What Radio You Need? 

FREE PHONE: 0800 774 7147 For Free Advice

  • Low Cost Radio Hire
  • Latest Motorola & Hytera Products
  • Free Support & Advice When Choosing the Right Product
  • Free UK Shipping
  • Free Technical Support
  • 24 Months Warranty
  • Price Promise
  • Easy Pay - Amazon/PayPal

Why But From Radio-Shop UK?

Please do not hesitate to contact us if there is anything we can help you with:

Call: 0113 350 1702


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