The Regional Communications System included the replacement of existing microwave systems, installation of 43 communication sites and the use of over 150, 800 MHz frequency pairs that Agencies with LICENSES contributed. This concept of sharing limited frequency resources is a primary reason why the RCS has proven successful. The initial system has the capacity to accommodate 13,000 users and includes 97 percent coverage of the roadway network throughout San Diego and Imperial County.
The system provides both voice and data radio communications on separate networks. The RCS voice network uses Motorola's SmartZone 800 MHz trunked, simulcast radio technology. It supports mixed mode analog and digital communications, including encrypted capabilities. The RCS data network uses Motorola's 19.2 RD-LAP protocol and can support over 3,000 data users. The data network supports various data applications such as unit-to-unit messaging, GPS based Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL), Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD), access to local and national crime databases like the California Law Enforcement Telecommunication System (CLETS) and the National Crime Information Center (NCIC).