Major Carriers Agree to Nationwide 911 Texting Service
The top four wireless network operators have all agreed to let customers send text messages to 911 emergency centers via their networks. The Federal Communication Commission has been pushing for what it calls a next-generation 911 service and AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon Wireless are all officially on board. They will begin deploying the service in 2013, though the nationwide system is not expected to be complete until mid-2014. The carriers will send automatic bounce-back messages to people who send 911 texts in areas where the service is not yet available. "Access to 911 must catch up with how consumers communicate in the 21st century—and today, we are one step closer towards that vital goal," said FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. Voice calls to 911 are still the most effective way to communicate, but the FCC believes the text messaging service will help those who are unable to make calls during an emergency.
Galaxy S8 to Cost $750, S8+ to Cost $850: Carriers Share Launch Details
Samsung's new Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones will cost $750 and $850, respectively. The phones share almost all features other than size and both ship with 64 GB of internal storage.
Alcatel A30 Reaches Amazon Prime for Just $60
Amazon recently added the Alcatel A30 to its roster of Prime Exclusives. This entry-level Android handset includes a 5-inch HD screen and a 1.1 GHz Snapdragon 210 processor with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of storage.
Lenovo Says Bug Preventing Moto G Plus from Making 911 Calls On Verizon
Lenovo issued a notice this week warning that the Moto G5 Plus may not be able to connect 911 calls via VoLTE on Verizon's wireless network. The company has identified the bug and expects to issue a software patch in the next week or so.
FCC Adopts Rules for Text-to-911 for All Messaging Apps
The FCC today formally adopted rules that will require all providers of messaging services to enable their apps with text-to-911 capabilities. Earlier this year the FCC said industry players outside the four major wireless network operators need to get on board.
Bulk of Wireless 911 Calls Not Offering Accurate Location
Data culled from the FCC shows that the vast majority - 90% - of 911 emergency calls placed from wireless phones are not providing accurate location data. A company called Find Me 911 filed a Freedom Of Information Act request with the FCC in order to obtain the data.
Excuse me Mr. Burgler while I text for help
BTW: I was in earshot when someone used their phone to call 911 and when they did the phone played a loud tune. This is just an old Verizon flip phone that's probably 4-5 years old, but do phones typically do that when calling 911? Are equipment developers really dumb enough to program phones to alert criminals to the locations of their victims? Seriously, why not just go all the way and make the phone play "They're hiding over here!" in a repeating loop?