Google testing a system that provides more accurate caller locations during 911 calls
Whenever a person dials 911 from a mobile device, that user’s wireless service provider usually transmits the location of the caller to the call taker. But there are times when the location information that is being sent is far from being accurate, and in an emergency, having the correct location can spell the difference between life and death for the person needing the 911 assistance.
So it is really good to hear that Google, one of the world’s most reliable tech giants when it comes to processing data (in real time), is currently experimenting with a new system that should be able to send more accurate caller locations during a 911 call. According to a report recently published by the Wall Street Journal, the company has already conducted trials in a number of states in America.
During those tests, Google had successfully transmitted location information from a random selection of 911 callers who are using Android powered mobile devices, directly to the call takers. Google’s tests involved a total of 50 call centers that were taking calls from mobile users based in Florida, Tennessee, and Texas. In total, these call centers covered about 2.4 million people from those three states.
As claimed by RapidSOS, a company that participated in the trials, to the Wall Street Journal, more than 80 percent of the 911 calls that involved Google’s experimental system had better accuracy in relaying location data compared to what wireless service providers provided. Whereas mobile operator provided location estimates had, on average, a radius of about 522 feet, Google’s location estimates came with a radius of about 121 feet. In other words, Google’s location information was far more accurate and specific. On top of all this, Google’s data was also relayed faster than carrier provided information.
Not only has Google become the undisputed leader of desktop and mobile searches in the last decade or so, recent years have also seen the tech giant be more proactive in putting its location information accuracy to good use especially in emergency situations. Some may remember that about a year ago, Google had introduced some new updates to its Phone app so that an Android mobile user’s location details (such as address and map, plus latitude and longitude coordinates) are shown automatically when he or she calls for 911 assistance.
If the rest of the planned trials go well, Google is looking to start launching the feature across the United States before the end of this year.