Motorola APX Next vs Motorola APX 6000 Review

Motorola has made a new radio designed for keeping public safety safe and effective. The Motorola APX Next radio was launched in late April 2020 and designed for law enforcement and fire fighters.

Motorola APX Next allows users to share locations and multimedia messages. Advanced applications include SmartProgramming, SmartLocate, SmartConnect, and ViQi Virtual Partner.

Introducing this radio to the APX series, the Motorola APX Next sets itself apart from other radios such as the Motorola APX 6000. One way it sets itself apart is by allowing to use of LMR networks for voice communications for data applications.

We’ll cover the new advanced features of the APX Next radio in-depth and show the similarities and differences against another popular public safety radio, the Motorola APX 6000.

Design

Crowned as the future of radio, the APX Next has a new durable military design and a 3.6” touch screen with radio applications for public safety and law enforcement. The new antenna technology improves comfort and wearability for wearing the radio during long shifts or emergencies.

The Motorola APX Next has a large touchscreen, compared to the Motorola APX 6000 whose design features an LED screen and a full keypad. The new touchscreen is easily operable when wearing gloves and, in any weather, and is readable in any lighting. Found on the top of the radio is another large 1.2” color display letting you see status updates by quickly glancing down.

The Motorola APX Next has an IP68 rating letting the radio be submerged in two meters of water for roughly four hours.

The Motorola APX 6000 is fit for any mission with a T shape design so users can grip the radio even with wet and slippery hands. The radio also has a top display just as the APX Next and provides quick radio status and critical information.

Tempered glass on the APX 6000 protects the color display and scratches from impact or pressure. The dual latch battery protects the radio from powering off during use or ejecting the battery if the radio drops. Similar to the Motorola APX Next, the Motorola APX 6000 has an IP68 rating and can be submerged in two meters of water for about four hours. The radio is MIL-STD 810 C, D, E, F, G.

Both radios have large orange emergency buttons for alerting airwaves with audible beeps during panic or emergencies.

Battery Life

The Motorola APX Next has three different battery options. Coming with the radio is a standard 4400 mAh battery. The radio also has an optional high capacity 5650 mAh battery. The radio utilizes IMPRES 2 Smart Battery Technology. You can expect to get around 14hrs of battery life between charges.

The Motorola APX 6000 comes with one standard rechargeable lithium-ion IMPRES 2 2500 mAh two-way radio battery. Other battery options are available with a wide range of capacities.

Applications

The Motorola APX Next comes with new applications designed to improve communication and safety among users.

These new applications include,

  • Smart Messaging
  • Smart Mapping
  • Smart Connect
  • ViQi Virtual Assistant
  • Radio Central

Smart Messaging

This feature lets public safety communicate securely. Smart Messaging lets you share texts, images, videos, and voice notes with your team.

Smart Mapping

Smart Mapping helps you stay connected with your team wherever you are. You can connect and locate other first responders right on your touchscreen. This helps you increase awareness, teamwork, and security. Motorola’s 2019 Law Enforcement Survey claims that 47% of agencies want technology to improve situational awareness. That’s just what the Motorola APX Next does.

Smart Content

The Motorola APX Next is a P25 radio system. SmartConnect helps maintain your P25 voice and data communication by automatically switching between P25 and broadband even if you are outside of coverage. This helps keep coverage in other jurisdictions and indoors.

This feature is also available on Motorola APX 6000 radio.

ViQi Virtual Technology

ViQi is a virtual assistant in the Motorola APX Next radio so you can get information fast. ViQi gives you rapid responses that let you check driver’s license and change the channel. All you have to do is ask. ViQi simplifies tasks you can stay focused. ViQi voice and communication come through a newly designed speaker microphone.

The Motorola APX 6000 radio can also be used with ViQi too.

Radio Central

This new feature allows you to reduce the time and resources when you are updating your radio fleet. Using cloud-based programming only takes minutes instead of months. You’re now able to program 1000 radios in 10 minutes.

The Motorola APX 6000 has its technologies incorporated into the radio. The Motorola APX Next also uses these technologies.

These technologies include,

  • Adaptive Dual Sided Operation
  • Adaptive Noise Suppression
  • Adaptive Speaker Equalizer
  • Adaptive Gain Control
  • Adaptive Wind porting

Adaptive Dual-sided Operation allows you to talk into either side of the radio.

Adaptive Noise Suppression adjusts the audio to cancel out the noise as it changes.

Adaptive Speaker Equalization adjusts the loudspeaker settings, so the sound is optimized at lower volumes and speech intelligibility at higher volumes

Adaptive Gain Control adjusts the microphone based on how loud you talk to ensure a constant audio level on the receiving end.

Adaptive Wind porting cancels out wind noise with a third microphone.

The Motorola APX 6000 utilizes voice announcement to provides audible confirmation of channel selections to scan, direct mode, emergency, encryption, and control keys.

Security

Both the Motorola APX Next and Motorola APX 6000 are P25 radios meaning it ensures only valid users can access the system. The Motorola APX Next and APX 6000 radio utilize 256-bit AES Single Key Encryption staying protected from scanners and eavesdroppers.

Connectivity

Both the Motorola APX Next and APX 6000 have Bluetooth but have different versions. The Motorola APX Next uses version 5.0 while APX 6000 uses version 4.0. The Bluetooth technology has 128-bit encryption. Emergency Find Me is available on the Motorola 6000 that is Bluetooth enabled to assist the user during emergencies and distress.

Both radios have GPS tracking for easily sharing your location and finding others on your team.

The Motorola APX Next radio utilizes technology equipped for public safety and law enforcement in a new touchscreen design. While the APX 6000 radio doesn’t have the new advanced features, the APX series remains the top choice for critical communications.

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