Rich Freeman on 15 May 2019 11:46:17 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] PLUG Fusion room or DMR Talkgroup

On Wed, May 15, 2019 at 1:59 PM Keith C. Perry
<> wrote:
> I think the idea though is that repeaters because of all the network
> radio stuff are becoming under-utilized and thus the value proposition
> of maintaining and upgrading them overtime becomes more questionable.

I'm not saying to NOT bridge the talkgroup to a repeater.  I'm just
saying that it ought to be online so that we're not limited to the RF
coverage of one repeater.

>  However, if there is local repeater that wants to host the hardware and software needed for this it provides the motivation to continue to do so.

Jim's proposal doesn't require any hardware or software.  He proposed
just using a local repeater, without any online talk groups.  All
repeaters support this out of the box.

> Even if the converage isn't as centralized as we want its probably a
> conversation to be had- especially if we can get several operators to
> carry the traffic.  I could see that being a win for systems that are
> not currently linked.  Devil is in the details, perhaps there is a
> reason why this hasn't been done yet.

Like I said, I'm fine with linking an online talkgroup to a repeater
somewhere if the owner is fine with it.  I just wouldn't use ONLY a
single repeater site.

The reason that these repeaters are underutilized is network effects.
If I want to talk to you using a single unlinked repeater, we both
need to be within RF range of it using our preferred radio.  If for me
that is an HT inside my house, that means a repeater within probably
10 miles of my house or so.  Now, if we're talking mobile rigs or
better yet base stations with antennas on roofs the footprint is much
larger, but since most of us don't like being tethered to a desk all
day that isn't as practical an option.

If the talkgroup is online most of these issues go away because you
can have all the hotspots you want, and it is easy to bridge them to
repeaters as well.  The internet makes the distance issues go away,
and you can have that group where everybody lives 25 miles away from
everybody else.

Now, you can use one of the large local repeater networks that are
bridged, but even those aren't always great indoors/etc.  They're also
busier, and none have any close affiliation with PLUG right now that I
know of.  Warminster and Penn are the two big ones I'm aware of that
are still reasonably local.  But, those aren't bringing traffic to an
otherwise-idle repeater.

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