Yaesu amateur radio equipment is once again being manufactured independently after four years as a subsidiary of Motorola. In a December 27 letter to the amateur, aviation and marine radio communities, Vertex-Standard President and CEO Jun Hasegawa announced a reorganization -- effective January 1 -- in which Motorola would take full control of the company's land mobile radio (LMR) line, while Yaesu amateur gear and Standard-Horizon air and marine radios would be manufactured by a new company with an old name -- Yaesu Musen Co., Ltd. Hasegawa said the new company would be wholly owned by members of his family. There were no changes in personnel or offices of Yaesu USA, which is now the umbrella organization for Yaesu amateur equipment and Standard-Horizon marine and aircraft equipment sold in the U.S.
Meanwhile, Yaesu announced its plans to enter the digital voice and data segment of the amateur market, introducing a new PDF brochure on its website, titled "A Digital Communications Guide for Amateur Radio Operators." The brochure provides explanations of different digital voice and data encoding and transmission, and reveals that the company is planning to introduce a C4FM (4-level FSK) FDMA (Frequency Division Multiple Access) handheld and mobile rig into the amateur market in the first half of 2012. C4FM is not compatible with the GMSK data format used in D-STAR radios, so it is unlikely that the two types of radios will be able to talk to each other. The C4FM signal's bandwidth (12.5 kHz) is double that of the GMSK signal, and Yaesu says that provides it with a much better bit error rate. It says C4FM is the current standard used by APCO P25 radios in the US public safety community as well as for Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) devices popular in Europe and Asia. Yaesu's digital communications guide may be downloaded in PDF form at <http://bit.ly/tI86hj>.