ANNAPOLIS, Md., Dec. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- TeleCommunication Systems, Inc. (TCS) (NASDAQ: TSYS), a world leader in highly reliable and secure mobile communication technology, today announced its support of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)'s vote to adopt proposed rules that all wireless carriers and providers of certain Internet-based ("over the top") text messaging applications must implement technology to allow customers to send text messages to 9-1-1 in areas where public safety answering points (PSAPs) are prepared to receive the texts.
TCS also announced support of the voluntary agreement by the four leading U.S. wireless carriers – Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile – to make text to 9-1-1 nationally available by May 15, 2014. Text to 9-1-1 allows those in the hearing/speech-impaired community and persons needing emergency assistance, but who are unable to make a voice call or otherwise prevented from reaching emergency service personnel using voice, to communicate more effectively and rapidly with PSAPs using commercially available text messaging.
The FCC also proposes to require "bounce back" messages (instructing the sender to dial 9-1-1 if possible) to customers who attempt to send a message in an area where the service is unavailable, and seeks comment on the feasibility of all carriers and third-party messaging providers to implement bounce back messages by the voluntary deadline of June 20, 2013. As a leader in text messaging, location-based infrastructure and cloud-based services for the public safety system, TCS is uniquely qualified to assist wireless carriers and Internet-based text messaging providers with meeting the proposed dates suggested by the FCC.
"TCS commends the FCC, the carriers, APCO and NENA for their commitment to the goal of a nationwide implementation of text to 9-1-1," said Maurice B. Tose, TCS chairman, CEO and president. "TCS experts have been providing recommendations to the FCC on public safety technologies, including text to 9-1-1, for many years. Just as SMS was the first instance of customer-provided data in wireless, SMS will again be the first instance of customer-provided data in public safety and will serve as a catalyst for Next Generation 9-1-1. We stand ready to continue our dialogue with the FCC, carriers, public safety, advocates for the hearing/speech- impaired community, and all other affected parties in order to achieve successful implementation of this important directive."
TCS is the largest U.S.-based provider of text messaging infrastructure, with software that has delivered almost one trillion text messages over the last 12 months. TCS text to 9-1-1 solutions provide a day-to-day reliable and cost-effective option that meets PSAP requirements, while providing the public with a mainstream communication channel to contact emergency services rapidly.
About TeleCommunication Systems, Inc.
TeleCommunication Systems, Inc. (TCS) (NASDAQ: TSYS) is a world leader in highly reliable and secure mobile communication technology. TCS infrastructure forms the foundation for market leading solutions in E9-1-1, text messaging, commercial location and deployable wireless communications. TCS is at the forefront of new mobile cloud computing services providing wireless applications for navigation, hyper-local search, asset tracking, social applications and telematics. Millions of consumers around the world use TCS wireless apps as a fundamental part of their daily lives. Government agencies utilize TCS' cyber security expertise and professional services for mission-critical communications. Headquartered in Annapolis, MD, TCS maintains technical, service and sales offices around the world. To learn more about emerging and innovative wireless technologies, visit www.telecomsys.com.
SOURCE TeleCommunication Systems, Inc.