Serving Public Safety's Demand for Data

By Arlene King posted 05-02-2012 00:31


Reposting from “Fresh Ideas in Public Safety” Blog by Darren McQueen on April 23, 2012.

Wireless data is exploding around every corner.  So what does this mean for public safety agencies? Data is becoming just as critical as voice to doing the job of protecting lives and property.

In fact, a Motorola survey found that 89 percent of public safety professionals said data is just as important as voice. There's a need for ultra-reliable broadband networks, applications and devices to deliver real-time information to the men and women serving as our country's first responders. This means solutions that are built from the ground up for public safety, not consumer-grade products using consumer-grade applications.

We know that public safety agencies rely on purpose-built mission critical communication systems and devices to stand up to the rigors of their work – like a firefighter entering a burning building or a police officer situated on watch in a back alley. As the wireless world moves to broadband technology, we are building public safety-grade LTE networks and finding ways to interoperate and interconnect our P25 mission critical voice systems for a holistic public safety-grade communication network, including a portfolio of right-built devices.

Before building the next generation broadband handheld device, the LEX700, we went out and talked to firefighters and police officers, detectives and administrators to understand the requirements. They told us it needs to provide media-intense applications, have a shared view and provide up-to-the-minute location information. It needs to help with daily activities like report writing, and it needs to interoperate with the P25 voice system. It needs to be a virtual partner for my radio.

So as mobile broadband data becomes a reality for public safety agencies, helping them to do their job better, there will be public safety-grade devices such as the LEX 700 to connect first responders, share information and collaborate, and be ready for the street when the unexpected happens.

Darren McQueen is Corporate Vice President and General Manager of Wireless Private Broadband and iDEN Products and Solutions for Motorola Solutions