With two thirds of the world population now carrying a mobile phone, we are in the position for the first time to enable a new form of broadcasting. Alcatel-Lucent has announced a new Broadcast Message Center (BMC) which enables targeted government text alerts to be sent to mobile users based on their location – from a small local area to nationwide. The flexibility and scalability of the BMC will save lives in the event of a gas leak, chemical spillage or natural disaster, as it leverages cell broadcast technology to bypass the network congestion that invariably hampers emergencies. The BMC will also be deployed as a commercial broadcast solution, enabling enterprises to communicate with a mobile workforce, or service providers to offer opt-in subscriber services that generate new sources of revenue.
It’s an amazing new world that we are seeing unfold as mobile handsets head towards ubiquity and every person becomes a node on the global wirless network, and one of the biggest immediate opportunities is to be able to notify millions of mobile users within seconds when there is a national, state or local emergency.
Alcatel-Lucent’s BMC extends emergency alerting to mobile users within a geographic area as large as a nation or as small as a few city blocks. Hence, the platform ensures critical warnings and information reach the right people at the right time.
Trials have already been held and the BMC will allow mobile carriers to comply with emergency alerting standards in both the United States and Europe, enabling them to rapidly disseminate warnings and safety information to citizens in an emergency.
Acting as secure interface between an emergency management agency and the service provider’s network, the Broadcast Message Center receives emergency alerts and broadcasts them to cell sites serving mobile customers in a specific geographic area.
For instance, targeted text alerts can be sent to:
- Residents threatened by tsunamis, wildfire, tornadoes, floods, etc.
Text alerts include a dedicated vibration cadence and audio attention signal for wireless customers with hearing or vision disabilities. The Broadcast Message Center enables service providers to easily manage message and delivery priorities, scheduling and re-transmission needs, which is key in crisis situations.
The flexibility and scalability of the Broadcast Message Center enables service providers to use it beyond emergency alerting for commercial broadcast services. It provides advertisers and interest groups alternative targeted marketing channels, offers enterprises and municipalities an effective means to communicate with their mobile workforce, while also helping service providers offer opt-in subscriber services that generate new sources of revenue.