Carriers Continue Push for Phased-In 9-1-1 Indoor Location Accuracy, NEAD Concerns
Wednesday, September 11, 2019 | Comments

Wireless carriers continue to lobby the FCC through the CTIA trade association on indoor location accuracy requirements, pushing for phased-in ±3-meter Z-axis accuracy requirements and pointing out challenges with the National Emergency Address Database (NEAD), which would provide dispatchable locations to 9-1-1 centers.

CTIA and nationwide wireless carriers contend that testing remains necessary to validate the ability of vertical location technology solutions to meet the FCC’s proposed ±3 meter metric. However, Z-axis location technology vendors said that 2018 testing shows the technology is ready for deployment.

CTIA plans to begin Stage Za testing this month and conclude it this year. Google has committed to participate in Stage Za testing.

“Given expected advances in commercially available vertical location solutions, the participants also noted the importance of ensuring that the commission’s vertical location framework reflects and incents the ongoing evolution of vertical location technology,” said an ex parte letter outlining an FCC meeting. “The participants encouraged the commission to consider the vertical location framework holistically and recognize the challenges identified above. The participants suggested that the commission’s rules should establish the appropriate incentives for the wireless ecosystem and public-safety community to work together towards producing the most actionable vertical location information for wireless 9-1-1 calls.”

Regarding the NEAD, CTIA said third-party adoption and scalability issues remain substantial challenges to NEAD-based dispatchable location solutions.

The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) contends that a dispatchable location including the room number, floor, street and city where a 9-1-1 call originated is the best option for location accuracy.

The National Emergency Number Association (NENA) requested a geodetic location, which is latitude, longitude and elevation. A geodetic location is based on the industry-approved Presence Information Data Format Location Object (PIDF-LO) standard defined in Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) RFC 4119, initially drafted in 2005 with three updates.

The full Aug. 29 CTIA filing is here.

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