[aprssig] OT: Yaesu to release digital amateur radio gear

Amateur Radio WB8NUT duffy at wb8nut.com
Fri Jan 6 15:18:26 CST 2012


I did not answer it because I have no idea why Kenwood and Yaesu have 
not built D-Star equipment. That is a question best asked of them.

However, you can take a look at history. Kenwood was the first to 
introduce a radio with built-in APRS. No other vendor made such a radio 
for a number of years. Yaesu finally a few years ago brought out a 
handheld followed by a mobile. Icom has never made an APRS radio to my 
knowledge. I have no idea why Kenwood adopted it first, why it took 
Yaesu so long to come out with their offering, and why Icom never has 
produced an APRS radio. Then again, I never asked. Maybe, and this is 
just speculation, that the market is not big enough yet. Only the three 
of them can provide that answer.

Being in technology for a number of years (not radio related) I have 
experienced a lot of "it's not good, we're not going in that direction, 
because it was not invented here" syndrome. Maybe that is the real 
underlying reason. Don't know. Not sure how Yaesu or Kenwood would 
respond. Then again, even if they did respond, would that be accurate or 
just marketing spin?

Yes, I agree, perception is reality. Won't argue that. But people have 
that perception because they are not educated on the subject, hence 
THEIR reality is it is an Icom thing. And while the perception is 
correct as it is THEIR reality, it does not mean it is right. The way to 
correct the reality and the ignorance is education and obviously Icom 
and the JARL have not done a very good job of educating people. I will 
fault them with that error.

Best Regards,


On 1/6/12 4:01 PM, Eric Lorenz K9LGE wrote:
> (My apologies to the list owners...I realize this has probably gotten 
> way off topic, but I believe the point being made to correct 
> misconceptions here are important).
> With all due respect Duffy...you either totally missed the point of my 
> post, or ignored it.
> You name these people who have developed stuff for D-Star. Great! But 
> that wasn't my question. Why haven't Kenwood or Yaseu introduced a 
> D-Star radio. You talk about Kenwood having one in Japan. One that 
> they are REMARKETING from ICOM. So I'll ask the question again...if 
> this is such a great wonderful universal open system...why is ONLY 
> ICOM marketing gear for it? You don't seem to be able to answer that 
> question...and just go on about how great D-Star is. Until the other 2 
> of the Ham Radio 'big 3' start selling D-Star gear that THEY HAVE 
> DESIGNED AND BUILT, not just REMARKETED from ICOM, then as far as I am 
> concerned, it is an ICOM system.
> You can talk about how great the system is, and about all the people 
> building stuff for it...but the fact is until more than just one 
> company is building gear for this system, the PERCEPTION will remain 
> that it is an ICOM system. Period. Because as far as the US goes, all 
> the commercially built radios, repeaters, etc...have that little Icom 
> logo on them.
> For some...perception is reality, regardless.
> Eric K9LGE
> On 1/6/2012 8:56 AM, Amateur Radio WB8NUT wrote:
>> Icom does not own the rights to D-Star and did not develop it. JARL 
>> developed it and it is an open standard. That being said, any 
>> manufacturer can build equipment and NOT pay royalties to Icom or 
>> JARL. The only thing proprietary is the AMBE Codec, about $20 on a 
>> chip. I believe AMBE has developed the Codec for P25 and all the 
>> variants. So it will be same issue for Yaesu.
>> You asked who has developed non-Icom DStar equipment? Robin, AA4RC 
>> has developed both the DVDongle and the DVAP. Fred, has been working 
>> on numerous offering, one of which is a D-Star digital voice adapter. 
>> http://www.dutch-star.eu.
>> Several people have created and sell D-Star hotspots.
>> Kenwood remarkets an Icom D-Star radio in Japan.
>> I think Yaesu has gone their own way because competing with Icom 
>> would mean competition and price drops. With everyone using their own 
>> digital method means higher radio prices for all of us. One standard 
>> means lower prices and lower profits.
>> I do believe what Yaesu will be introducing could well be completely 
>> closed and proprietary.
>> Regards,
>> Duffy
>> www.wb8nut.com
>> On 1/6/12 9:11 AM, Lynn W. Deffenbaugh (Mr) wrote:
>>> This just reminds me of the moving beam barcode scanner patents and 
>>> licensing from years ago.  Symbol owned the patent and manufactured 
>>> barcode scanners.  They offered licenses to others, but what 
>>> competitor in their right mind would tool up a manufacturing plant 
>>> that paid royalties to their competitor?  So, everyone used Symbol's 
>>> scanners.
>>> Fast forward to Dstar.  iCom developed it and owns the rights.  I 
>>> imagine that to appease the powers-that-be, they had to offer 
>>> licenses so that they could call it "open".  But, again, what major 
>>> equipment manufacturer is going to tool up and pay their direct 
>>> competitor license fees for Dstar?  If anyone was foolish (aka 
>>> stupid) enough to do so, iCom could drive them out of the market by 
>>> dropping the price of their own equipment.  Remember, they can play 
>>> numbers games such that they don't have to include license fees in 
>>> the cost of their own radios, but their new competition still has to 
>>> pay them.  iCom gets a win-win by having an "open" protocol that 
>>> they are still marketing as a sole supplier.
>>> Until a FREE and "Open" digital voice protocol hits the amateur 
>>> bands, there won't be any real competition nor multi-vendor 
>>> solutions, IMHO.
>>> Lynn (D) - KJ4ERJ - Author of APRSISCE for Windows Mobile and Win32
>>> PS.  But what does Dstar have to do with APRS?  And is the new Yaesu 
>>> digital voice radio going to be APRS-capable as well?
>>> On 1/6/2012 8:57 AM, Eric Lorenz K9LGE wrote:
>>>> Duffy,
>>>> It is all about perception though...yes, Dstar is an 'open' 
>>>> protocol. Yes, anyone can license and manufacture equipment for it. 
>>>> So who (of the major ones) has done it? Icom. So yes, regardless of 
>>>> the reality...Dstar *appears* to be an Icom protocol. All that has 
>>>> to happen for that to change is for another manufacturer to get in 
>>>> the game. It would *appear* though...that this is going to remain 
>>>> Icom's thing for now.
>>>> Eric K9LGE
>>>> On Dec 29, 2011 7:59 PM, <duffy at wb8nut.com 
>>>> <mailto:duffy at wb8nut.com>> wrote:
>>>>     Icom gave away repeaters to help continue D-Star's growth. So
>>>>     what is the
>>>>     big deal with seeding equipment? Companies do it all the time.
>>>>     The Codec is proprietary yes. The Codec is available to anyone
>>>>     on a chip
>>>>     for around $25 in quantity one. Buy more and I assume there is
>>>>     a discount.
>>>>      Our radios use proprietary chips all the time with proprietary DSP
>>>>     firmware. P25 manufacturers use proprietary technology in their
>>>>     radios.
>>>>     >From what I have seen so far, D-Star radios are much less
>>>>     expensive than
>>>>     P25 radios.
>>>>     What do we need cross-compatibility for with Public Service?
>>>>     You think
>>>>     Police/Fire/Government are going to allow their systems to link
>>>>     to amateur
>>>>     systems? Hardly. And just like the differing P25 systems, the
>>>>     manufacturers have allowed for interoperability, but I hardly think
>>>>     government systems will tie into amateur systems.
>>>>     Icom trademarked it to protect it. Just like WB4APR trademarked
>>>>     APRS. No
>>>>     one is charging anyone else to use those names.
>>>>     D-Star is not an Icom protocol. It was developed by the JARL
>>>>     and it is an
>>>>     open technology available to anyone. Only the Codec is
>>>>     proprietary as
>>>>     discussed before.
>>>>     Duffy
>>>>     www.wb8nut.com <http://www.wb8nut.com>
> -- 
> Eric Lorenz
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