In the world of scanner radios, what's old is new again.
GRE America made scanners under its own label and also for Radio Shack, until it ran into manufacturing problems with its Chinese assembly plant and was forced out of business two years ago.
Last fall, Whistler Group announced it purchased GRE's intellectual property rights, and spent the winter tooling up its factory for scanner manufacturing.
This month, four Whistler radios were unveiled:
- The handheld Whistler WS1010/Radio Shack PRO-649, replacing the GRE PSR-100/Radio Shack PRO-404;
- The digital handheld WS1040/Radio Shack PRO-651, replacing the PSR-500/Radio Shack PRO-106;
- The digital base-mobile WS1065/Radio Shack PRO-652, replacing the PSR-600/Radio Shack PRO-197;
- The analog WS1025/Radio Shack PRO-650 base scanner, replacing the PSR-200/Radio Shack PRO-405.
Whistler scanners are available at Amazon.com at a price range of about $100 for the analog scanners and $500 for the digital scanners.
While orders are accepted now, shipping will take one to three months, Amazon says.
The Radio Shack version of the scanners is also listed at RadioShack.com, but the radios are listed as out of stock.
Whistler is now in a position to launch a full scale marketing war with Uniden, whose latest APCO P25 scanners, the BCD436 and BCD536, were launched with great fanfare in February and are considered the most advanced available.
Whistler is also working on the not-yet-released WS1095, a re-tooled version of the portable PSR-800 that will receive next generation P25 Phase II digital transmissions.