Commercial carriers commit to adopting technologies to improve 911 location accuracy

All four nationwide wireless carriers—AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint—will add device-based hybrid (DBH) location technologies that are designed to improve wireless emergency-caller location information, even within buildings, but public-safety officials expressed concerns about efforts surrounding vertical-location data.

SOURCE: Urgent Communications

DATE: September 12, 2018

“Dialing 911 is likely the most important call you ever make, and the wireless industry’s adoption of DBH technologies will make it easier for first responders to find you indoors more quickly and accurately,” said Tom Sawanobori, senior vice president and CTO for CTIA, a key trade association for commercial wireless providers.

DBH solutions leverage a combination of available technologies—from satellite GPS to sensor data and crowd-source Wi-Fi—to determine a 911 caller’s location. This approach is similar to the one used by popular commercial ride-sharing and navigation applications, which typically provide much better location data than carriers provide to 911 centers today, particularly when a wireless caller is inside a building, where GPS signals may not reach.

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