So, there is a much more to creating and implementing an ALE radio system than one realizes at first. All those factors affect viability and cost. Now, let's look at our experiences with the two different systems.
Our initial challenge arose after the radios were delivered. Programming the radio control heads of the MICOM XF involved many factors yet to be determined and was so complex that technicians normally responsible for maintenance and setup asked if we could provide a person from our ACS organization to take on the task. An ACS participant, Glenn Fleming, KC6WQD, an engineer working with another state agency, agreed and would eventually become paid staff to implement the Motorola ALE radio system.
The MICOM XF units were not like radios with which most EMCOMM unit participants have familiarity. They were originally made for installation in military tanks in Israel with separate components such as thick and long heavy-duty cables with military lock-tite fittings and separate control head, radio, and power source. The power supply - a large heavy box - and the radio cabinet were placed on the floor beneath the installed position at which we installed the control head and a separate speaker. Originally a WWII type phone-patch box was supplied, then later replaced with a more modern unit. That gave phone-patch capability IF the radio operator was familiar with that system and its requirements. The control head could be set up and controlled from a computer or by manual operation from the face plate. (These units are no longer in production, I understand, and Motorola second-generation units, the MICOM 2 series, are a major change and a more familiar design to most EMCOMM unit operators.)