Choosing a standard for public safety services

Thursday, 15 March, 2012

When it comes to public safety, always choose between P25 and TETRA standards, according to Phil Kidner from TCCA (TETRA and Critical Communications Association).

Kidner mentioned in his presentation at the APCO Australasia conference on the Gold Coast that the fastest growing region in the world using TETRA radios is the Asia-Pacific. He said although he believes in TETRA and would prefer if users choose the standard, he would like public safety services to adopt P25 rather than commercial or DMR services if not choosing TETRA for their network.

During his presentation he said TETRA can provide spectrum efficiency, ongoing development, interoperability, functionality and quality, and lifetime costs and benefits. It is able to send short data messages and images within 14 seconds but the downfall is that it is unable to send live streaming video.

He believes that the TCCA will migrate to LTE in the future and this reflects in the TETRA Association’s new name, TETRA and Critical Communications Association.

Kidner also said, “For mission-critical data there will remain a requirement for dedicated spectrum.” As the US provides spectrum on the 700 MHz band for their public safety agencies, Australia is yet to adopt this.

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