What is DECT?
Many communication devices operate on radio frequency (RF) devices like radios, Wi-Fi routers, Bluetooth devices and a host of others. DECT is a specific RF technology that gives device manufacturers more control over how their communications products operate.
DECT stands for Digitally Enhanced Communication Technology. It’s what allowed home telephones to go wireless and as a technology has evolved to provide higher quality audio for all kinds of communication devices.
What Does DECT Do For Me?
When it comes to portable group communication systems- like a tour guide system, using DECT provides benefits to the people using the devices that are simply not available with other RF-based systems.
Five Benefits of DECT-Powered Tour Guide Systems
- Two-Way Communication
- Easier to Manage Groups
- Improved Audio Quality
- Encryption Security
- Dedicated Frequency Band
Each of these five benefits combine to give you an easier to use system with the highest level of quality, both for you as the person running the group and your participants.
Most FM communication devices can only send OR receive signals, they can’t do both at the same time. Think of a walkie talkie where the leader has to finish their sentences with the word ‘over’ to indicate the channel is now clear for the other person to begin speaking. Imagine how difficult that would be in a tour or group-training environment. Your tour would just be a one-way blast of information without any engagement or learning.
“The two words ‘information’ and ‘communication’ are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through.”
Sydney J. Harris (American journalist)
You’d have to finish your thought, indicate you were finished, and wait for anyone to talk back. It would be a terribly unnatural way to have a group conversation. You find these types of technologies on low-cost devices where talking back is either not an option or is so inconvenient the leader never allows it.
The ListenTALK flagship device is a transceiver (meaning it transmits and receives audio) which allows the leader and a guest to talk back and forth freely thanks to DECT technology. It also allows the leader to decide if specific conversations should be heard between just leader and guest, or leader + guest + group.
This way, the leader can handle one-off questions and comments or allow the entire group to hear the question before it’s answered. ListenTALK gives the group leader complete control of the conversation, whether they choose to encourage further discussion, or need to reign in distracting comments. All of this can be done from the leader’s device, mid-tour.
Easier to Manage Groups
DECT allows ListenTALK to simplify how channels are programmed for the system, making it easier for you to use. With any group communication system, each device needs to be on the same channel to communicate. With typical RF tour systems this is done as the leader chooses a channel and either manually changes all devices to that channel (which takes an excruciating amount of time), or brings everyone in the group together and goes through step by step instructions with them to teach everyone how to change the channel on their devices.
As you can imagine, it’s inconvenient when the group’s channel begins to have static interference mid-tour and the only solution is to switch channels. The tour or training stops, the leader stops, and everyone must change the channels on their device. It’s a hassle for everyone and a huge waste of time.
DECT enables ListenTALK units to be programmed to pair devices together at the beginning of the tour and then automatically moves the entire group to the clearest available channel when interference is encountered. This whole process of channel hopping happens in the background automatically, so leaders and participants never deal with it or even notice that it’s happening.
Pairing devices together also means you can create multiple groups in the same area. So, if you have 20 transceivers you could create multiple smaller groups, like 2 groups of 10 or 4 groups of 5. This can be helpful if you want to run multiple tours at the same time, provide two slightly different tours, or if you have any translation needs.
Improved Audio Quality
DECT was designed for voice communication, so the quality difference is what you’d experience going from walkie talkies to a cordless phone. DECT has become an industry standard with dedicated frequency allocation and has low risk of interference from other devices. DECT can also maintain the audio quality over its broadcast range of up to 200 meters.
RF-based group communication systems require a transmitter unit and a receiver unit to be manually pre-tuned to the same channel. Massive static or interference is experienced when groups using the same channel come near each other, or when devices on the same channel increase their range.
DECT allows you to pair units together, rather than tuning them to the same channel, while at the same time constantly scanning for the clearest available channel and moving all paired units simultaneously. Your group gets the clearest available channel at all times without the tour operator ever needing to stop and adjust anything.
DECT allows the signal between devices to be encrypted. This feature is essential in locations like courtrooms, hospitals or sensitive corporate environments. In these settings, encryption is key, and sometimes required by law. On top of encryption, we programmed ListenTALK to require a physical proximity component in order to be paired together.
Conversely, many RF tour devices broadcast a signal, and any device in range can receive it. By requiring pairing to happen with NFC (near field communication) or through pairing in the dock, the tour leader has a physical level of protection in addition to DECT encryption.
As mentioned earlier, RF is used in many devices. Devices that use Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and radio frequency transmit on a 2.4 GHz band. ListenTALK operates on the 1.9 GHz band which means you’ll provide the clearest interference free experience possible during your tour or training.
Because DECT operates in a dedicated frequency allocation, maintains strict protocols, and has the ability to actively avoid interference from other wireless devices, clear audio quality is maintained over its broadcast range.
Why ListenTALK vs Other Systems
ListenTALK was designed to be easy to use while at the same time providing a high-quality experience for your guests. Every feature was thoughtfully designed to make sure anyone can pick up a system, create groups and engage with their guests with the highest quality audio available. Businesses choose ListenTALK over the competition because it’s easier to use and provides a clearer, more reliable experience for everyone involved.
Try Our Risk-Free 30-Day No Obligation Demo
We’ll customize a ListenTALK demo kit for you with all the equipment to meet your tour or training needs free for 30 days. We’re confident that once you experience the ListenTALK difference you’ll understand the impact a best-in-class system can have on your company.
Not quite ready for a demo? Use our Build Your Own tool to customize a ListenTALK system for your needs. In less than 5 minutes you’ll know how many devices you’ll need and what type of headsets we’d recommend for your application. It’s a great way to get familiar with ListenTALK.