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Icom Offers Remote Radio Control from Mobile Devices

Icom's M510 has wireless features to simplify VHF radio communications.

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Icom M510
Yachtsmen can now pair their smartphones to their Icom M510 VHF radios via an app. Courtesy Icom

Icom’s M510 is the first fixed-mount VHF radio from a mainstream manufacturer that gives users remote command and control over their radios from an Android or iOS mobile device.

Icom makes two M510 models: the standard IC-M510 and the IC-M510 AIS, which has a built-in AIS receiver. Both models play nicely with Icom’s RS-M500 app, giving users control of their VHF radios—including the ability to make VHF voice calls using the app’s push-to-talk function—via Wi-Fi frequencies that are transmitted over the vessel’s wireless local area network.

Icom M510
Icom’s CT-M500 External Interface Box Courtesy Icom

“The biggest challenge was designing a product in a COVID-pandemic world,” says Ray Novak, Icom’s senior sales manager. Working remotely was one challenge for Icom’s engineering team; another was supply-chain issues. The engineers thought they’d completed the design, but then there was a semiconductor and microprocessor shortage. Icom’s engineers solved this problem, Novak says, through “engineering efforts to use parts that are readily available.”

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Users can control the M510 from anywhere on board using up to three paired smartphones. Additionally, they can make VHF calls at the helm via the M510’s speaker microphone, or from an optional CommandMic HM-195GB.  

Icom M510
Users can control the M510 from anywhere on board using up to three paired smartphones. Courtesy Icom

The Vitals

Icom’s M510 is 6.9-by-4.3-by-2.1 inches, making it possible to install the fixed-mount radio in tight spaces.

The VHF radio uses a thin-film transistor and has a color LCD screen designed for sunlight readability and 180-degree viewing angles.

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The Icom M510 broadcasts at 25 watts. It also supports four-digit channels, has active-noise cancellation, and is built to IP68 standards.

Take the next step: icomamerica.com

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