As I’m sure you are aware, there are multiple sides to the e911 equation, in the 90’s I was working in the wireless industry and about a week after e911 wireless requirements were made public a local PSAP in Viginia sent me notice wanting us to begin collecting e911 fees for implementation for wireless location in their area. Being a CDMA provider, the technology path was not even clear at that point, would location be tower based, phone based, etc. But the local PSAP knew they wanted that enhanced capability and moved on it quickly PSAP’s must make choices all the time as to what technology to implement for the public’s Safety.
Remember the cost of implementing these new technologies is not just on the PBX vendor side, the carrier side, but also the PSAP must keep up with the times.
As an example, last week in my area the local PSAP announced plans to upgrade their 911 center with the ability to send and receive sms/text messages. Just in the county I live in the cost of the network upgrades from the local carrier to enable that will be close to 20k per month for a new fiber backbone, over a ten year contract that’s two and a half million dollars. This cost does not include equipment upgrades or software upgrades to add that enhanced capability, or the marketing it will take to get the public on board and the future standardization and cooperation with other area PSAPs, to standardize sms emergency services, like 911.
All of this funding will be coming from the state 911 funds collected from telecom carriers, which in the end is collected from end users. This is just one county, multiply that across the number of PSAPs across the country. Then add in the cost of implementing PBX based location services you mention, it’s going to add incremental cost to vendors, but ultimately to the end users.
Cost aside, In situations such as campus environments where the phone system is supporting multiple locations across a several block radius, it does become more important to be able to closely associate a device with an address, or exact location, as opposed to just the PBX location or a generic address. This can be accomplished today in the FreePBX/Asterisk environment by several different methods, but like any PBX solution will ultimately depend on the telecom carrier and PSAP support as well.
I watched your video and sure it would be great to send additional data to the 911 center, but that center must also be able to support receiving that data.
I’m not certain that any PSAP would base adding technology based solely on a closed proprietary PBX system… but it’s not too late, you have found our little open source project, we welcome your experience on our forum.