TeleCommunication Systems (TCS), a provider of mobile communication technology, announced that its TCS VoLTE9-1-1 service is first into production with Tier-1 wireless carriers, including two of the largest North American operators. The fully customizable solution enables 4G/LTE carriers to provide both 911 call routing and originating coarse/precise location information, including the 10-digit callback number, to public safety access points (PSAPs).
Initially, wireless carriers deployed 4G/LTE solely for data use. Without VoLTE9-1-1 capabilities, carriers must process emergency calls over 3G networks (circuit-switched fallback), even in areas where LTE is deployed. However, with TCS’ VoLTE9-1-1 service, they can now process 911 calls in an all-LTE environment, enabling them to reclaim or reuse 3G spectrum.
“As carriers increasingly move toward LTE networks, the ability to handle 911 emergency communications is critical,” said Thomas Ginter of TCS. “By leveraging VoLTE9-1-1, network operators are helping to ensure subscribers receive the responsiveness they need in an emergency situation, while expanding coverage to areas where 3G coverage is lacking.”
TCS VoLTE9-1-1 features:
- Call routing to the PSAP: The TCS VoLTE9-1-1 service routes a 4G/LTE-originated 911 call using coarse location via the route determination function component.
- PSAP telecommunicators can call back if disconnected: The TCS VoLTE9-1-1 service remains fully backwards compatible, supporting necessary functions such as providing PSAPs with full 10-digit subscriber callback numbers.
- Re-bid by a PSAP for precise location after call routing: The location retrieval function allows a wireless carrier complete flexibility in choosing its underlying high-accuracy location technology and supports updated/precise position requests.
- Emergency voice call continuity for location service: Location continuity and location delivery to the PSAPs are supported in usage scenarios where the 911 call switches from 4G/LTE to 3G/2G networks.
- Expansion beyond voice: As wireless networks advance, multimedia objects such as text, audio and video can be transferred to a compatible termination point with LTE IP networks, for example, an NG ESINet and i3 PSAP. Leveraging an all-IP network makes it easier and more cost effective to interconnect services.
- Small cell support: The TCS VoLTE9-1-1 solution supports small cells, including femtocells, microcells, and picocells, which are now commonly used in dense urban, indoor areas and enterprise networks.
TCS supports half of all U.S. wireless E911 calls, serving more than 140 million wireless and IP-enabled devices. The company holds more than 280 patents, 43 of which relate to public safety, and more than 360 pending worldwide.