Today, portable radio stations are used not only by the military and representatives of law enforcement agencies, as it was a couple of decades ago, but also by ordinary people. Respectively, case design walkie-talkie depends on its type and purpose. Let’s figure out what needs to be considered before starting to create a communication device body.
Development of a walkie-talkie: we define the target audience
First, you need to answer the question: who will use the device and why? Depending on this, we distinguish three groups of portable radio stations.
- Home appliances are used for games and entertainment. For amateur users, a minimal set of functions, low power (up to 2.5 W) and a simple design without unnecessary elements are enough.
- Semi-professional are suitable for those who are fond of hunting, tourism, mountaineering, that is, activities associated with a certain risk to health and life. For example, when tourists are traveling in a group, they need to keep in touch over long distances so that no one gets lost. In the field, devices with a power of up to 4 W with a robust housing that are resistant to mechanical damage will come in handy.
- Professional ones are intended for police officers, pilots, sailors, miners. Uninterrupted communication with colleagues for these people is extremely important, even human lives can depend on it. Professional walkie-talkies work at distances up to 15 km and have a power of more than 5 watts. Such devices can withstand extreme conditions.
Walkie talkie body: which material to choose?
Again, we start from the needs of the target consumers.
- For amateurs who buy a walkie-talkie for entertainment, a lightweight plastic case will be fine.
- Travelers and extremists will need a durable plastic case reinforced with a metal chassis in case the radio falls or gets bumped.
- Professionals working in hazardous environments will find robust plastic and metal enclosures that are resistant to mechanical stress. Although the metal has its drawbacks: it weighs a lot and “chills” hands.
Usually, professional walkie-talkies weigh more due to the filling and powerful case. However, a heavy device is inconvenient to use and carry with you at all times. Therefore, it is important to find a balance between the size of the device and its functionality. And the material also affects how the walkie-talkie tolerates low and high temperatures.
When designing, it is necessary to take into account the degree of protection of the enclosure. IP (Ingress Protection Rating) is an indicator of the resistance of the shell to moisture, dust and solid particles. It is designated by two numbers: the first indicates the level of protection against the penetration of foreign objects (from 0 to 6), the second – from water (from 0 to 9). That is, the IP69 marking means that the device is dust and waterproof. So, walkie-talkies with a low level of protection are suitable for security guards in a store, but sailors and fishermen need waterproof devices.
The IK mark demonstrates the level of protection against mechanical stress. A value of 00 is a complete lack of protection, 10 – the device can withstand a drop of a load weighing 5 kg from a height of 40 cm. Additionally, it is recommended to make rubber inserts to increase the level of protection against moisture and shock. The rubberized body is more comfortable to hold, because it does not slip out of your hands.
Creating a walkie-talkie: equipment
Industrial design walkie-talkies and communications equipment depends on their configuration. The basic structure of the walkie-talkie looks like this:
- radio transmitter;
- signal conversion device;
- power unit.
The type of antenna (removable or non-removable) and power supply unit (batteries or rechargeable battery) is directly reflected in the design. Batteries, in turn, differ in weight, size, price and physical properties. For example, a nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery is non-toxic, but sensitive to low temperatures. And the lithium-ion is compact, but subject to the “memory effect” (reversible loss of capacity).
Additionally, the radios are equipped with:
- display (mostly amateur and stationary);
- charger (included or purchased separately);
- charge indicator;
- clip (built-in or removable).
Buttons, switches, speakers, connectors should be located so that the user can easily operate the device even with one hand, be it an amateur or professional radio.
Communication media development: stages
- Drawing up a technical assignment.
- Market research.
- Concept development.
- Final revision of the selected concept and 3D modeling walkie-talkies.
How much does it cost to design a walkie-talkie?
The price for the design of the radio case depends on the following conditions:
- availability of raw materials;
- technical complexity of the device;
- the number of concepts.
Industrial design studio KLONA offers communication and other services – check out complete list on our website. We help our clients to implement interesting projects and invent new devices.