What stands out as the radio of choice for US police?

Okay, you understood ‘cops’ that is not a word we normally use here within the UK. We Brits historically often refer, respectfully, to our ‘boys in blue’ as ‘bobbies’ or ‘the old bill’.

Anyway, considering the fact that, I’m gonna assume that you’re wondering about the American law enforcement and their longstanding joint venture with the Motorola Corporation. OK, here goes…

Reported by Motorola’s own internet site,

“Law enforcement communications and police communications are essential assets to the safety and security initiatives in any community. Advancing police communications allow law enforcement to be more mobile and more rapidly respond to issues. Motorola offers an extensive product line to enhance law enforcement communications with less paperwork and faster, highly reliable performance”.

Motorola manufactured car radios as early on as the 1920’s and US police force and the fire brigade had a number of of those, however it wasn’t until 1930 that the 1st police car two way radio was developed and developed by Motorola. In line with the official internet site,

“Sales of Motorola police radios began in November 1930. Among the first customers (all in the U.S. state of Illinois) were the Village of River Forest; Village of Bellwood Police Department; City of Evanston Police; Illinois State Highway Police; and Cook County Police in the Chicago area. As more police departments used radios, challenges emerged. Rough roads, engine noises, interference, high power consumption, and frequency instability led Paul Galvin to recognize that police departments needed a radio specifically engineered for patrol cars”.

In 1936, the Motorola Law enforcement Cruiser 2 way radio was manufactured. It was successful and Motorola are a trusted brand name by US Law enforcement since. In 1939, engineer Don Mitchell created the Mobile T6920 AM Transmitter. It had been another success, becoming a rational choice for that police because,

“This complete Motorola two-way radio system was priced about one-fourth as much as the competition’s, and the transmitters could be installed in cars that already had receivers in the same frequency band. In 1940 the Police Department in Bowling Green, Kentucky, became the first customer for a complete Motorola AM two-way radio system. The radios were so well-designed that Galvin Manufacturing produced the same models for several years, until FM technology replaced them in the 1940s”.

Noticeably, the US law enforcement have a long and fruitful relationship with the Motorola Corporation. This evidently applies to walkie-talkies also. It makes complete sense to use a trusted, easy to implement product for successive years of officers, who often have to respond promptly and instinctively to numerous troubles.

The first law enforcement to use 2 way radios were in fact Australian, but subsequently the Second World War, mobile radios were to become standard issue in nearly all first world nations.