What is the future of Amateur Radio

What is Amateur Radio’s Future?

The radio spectrum has always been a place to attract the minds of engineers and homebrewers that conduct experiments and create inventions. During its history, research by amateur radio hobbyists have had a significant impact on science, engineering, industry and social services. Amateur radio has helped to empower nations and save lives.

Now that the Internet connects billions around the globe, many potential amateur radio operators have been diverted away from amateur radio. Time is also taking its toll on the number of amateur radio operators. New licenses continue at the anemic pace of around 7,000 per year. In 2018, the number of U.S. licensed amateurs were only about 750,000. With active ham radio operators primarily in their 60’s and 70’s now, statistics offer a bleak outlook for the future of amateur radio.

The question amateurs have been kicking around for years comes into play. How and what do amateur radio enthusiasts do to attract young people into our ranks? There seems to be a deep divide regarding these questions.

With social media as their method of global communications,, it appears that young people who do take an interest in amateur radio view it as a form of community service. In their world, a transceiver is no longer required to chat around the world.

Simple cheap handie talkies can connect to the Internet by way of local repeaters now. Within amateur radio itself, an expensive transceiver and a huge antenna are no longer required to talk around the world.

What do you think Amateur Radio will look like decades from now?

73 de KE2YK

A Chinese Invasion ???

The TYT TH-UVF1

TYT TH-UVF1

Now we all know that the Chinese government is buying up our government’s debt these days but it seems that the Chinese have no intention of stopping there.

I recently noticed that some of the better known Ham Radio stores like AES and Universal Radio now sell the TYT and the WOUXUN (pronounced Oh- Sheng) HT’s. I was also a bit surprised to see a full review of one of the WOUXUN radios in a recent QST.

So you might ask yourself; why are these radios gaining traction in the Ham Radio stores and what is so attractive about these radios anyway? I have to fess up and say that I don’t actually own one of these HT’s but have spent a fair amount of time chatting with Joe, w2ofd about his recent purchase. Joe recently bought the TYT TH-UVF1 dual band HT and has favorably commented about its features and functionality on several occasions.

Joe’s recent purchase from Lentini Communications included the desk charger, car charger (for a limited time), software and programming cable for under $150 (shipping included). When listening to his TYT, the audio is strong and sounds very natural. Joe happens to also own a few Yaesu HT’s and as far as I am concerned, the audio of his TYT is superior to those radios.

Like most (if not all) new radios sold these days, programming is best done via the computer. I own the Kenwood TH-F6A and find that the advantage of programming it with the computer adds a new dimension to the term “user friendly”.

Programming via the computer makes frequency updates and adding alpha-numeric id’s a snap. Loading different, preprogrammed (profiles) into the radio  is a real asset when away from the home QTH.

Rather than repeat the radio specs here, I have included a few links for your review.

http://universal-radio.com/catalog/ht/5565.html

http://universal-radio.com/catalog/ht/5541.html

http://universal-radio.com/catalog/ht/5547.html

Pros:

Wide Band Receive, Clean Design, Solid Construction, Included Extras, Programming Software, Audio Quality, Low Cost

Cons:

Poorly Written User Guide

Wrap Up:

If you are looking for a nicely designed radio (with extras) for a very reasonable price and you have the patience to decipher the user manual, then, in my opinion the TYT TH-UVF1 is a great buy for the money.

First Half of 2010 Sees Upswing in New Amateur Radio Licenses

Ham Radio License

Get Your Ham Radio License

With more than 18,000 new Amateur Radio licenses issued in the first half of this year — 18, 270 to be exact — 2010 is shaping up to be a banner year for Amateur Radio. So far, the number of new licenses issued by the FCC in 2010 is outpacing the January-June 2009 totals by almost 8.5 percent; at this time last year, the FCC had issued 16,844 new licenses.

See full Article here:

http://www.arrl.org/news/first-half-of-2010-sees-upswing-in-new-amateur-radio-licenses