The Department of Homeland Security has awarded Covia Labs Inc. a contract to research and develop public safety mobile broadband applications for mission critical communications, the company says.
Under the contract, Covia is to engage the public safety community to understand their requirements for mission critical interoperable voice communications, and then develop a plan and deliver software technology that leverages “long term evolution” (LTE), existing communications systems, and Covia Labs’ Connector interoperability platform to address those requirements, the company says.
The, in succeeding phases, the software is to be used to build a working system that operates over LTE on selected commercially available off the shelf, third-party communications equipment and “land mobile radio” systems to allow the seamless integration of mobile voice with text, photos, video messaging, GPS, maps and sensors across a wide range of devices.
The licensing of the 700 MHz band along with the selection of LTE for a national public safety broadband network presents a strong opportunity to solve the systemic inability of public safety personnel from disparate agencies to seamlessly communicate with each other, the company says. While using the 700 MHz block and LTE standards provides a strong base for solving incompatibility problems, a new standardized methodology and application framework is needed to bridge, unify and evolve all the technologies needed to provide the interoperability, features, performance and security required for mission critical mobile voice communication, the firm adds.
The problem of interoperable communications has long challenged public safety officers, emergency responders and soldiers, but under this program, Covia Labs will identify the best solutions to address those challenges in a timely, economical and comprehensive manner, said David Kahn, CEO of Covia Labs.
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