Technology Driving the Next Generation of Policing
Westbase and Panasonic TOUGHBOOK enabling police to solve crime on the go
To be effective in the modern business world, mobile workforces need the same access to centralised systems and applications when on the move as office-based workers. Westbase Technology’s mobile networking solutions, alongside Panasonic TOUGHBOOK, are helping to address these challenges with the ultimate mobility package for on-the-road working. Westbase delivers powerful WiFi hotspots in and around the vehicle, to ensure connection to secure and fast Internet anywhere on the move.
All across Europe we are seeing nations upgrading their emergency services networks from TETRA radio to new dedicated 4G/5G networks. These upgrades open up the opportunity to enhance certain applications already in use today, as well as introduce a host of new applications. Combined, these advancements can take policing and its use of mobile computing to a whole new level.
TETRA has been a highly successful and reliable network for critical communications for many years, but the ability to now use data across much faster 4G/5G networks allows us to increase the ability and effectiveness of police officers in vehicles and on the streets.
So, how will new high speed, data networks help the police forces?
We will see enhanced capabilities around the mobilisation and maintenance of patrol cars. For example, the capabilities of AVLS (Automatic Vehicle Location System) for advanced routing of vehicles will be significantly improved.
The telematics that come from the vehicle will be in real-time, enabling support teams to monitor vehicle health and performance. This is key in helping to schedule proactive
maintenance before issues occur, minimising the time vehicles are off the road and maximising their time in use.
The use of cameras, such as body worn cameras, facial recognition and ANPR systems will be enhanced. Being able to transmit and use data in real-time will allow officers to do more and faster by accessing centrally held information at the edge of the network, while also giving support teams a fuller picture of what is happening in the field for faster response.
The ability to asset track all the equipment used by officers and vehicles in near real-time will save time and money in lost equipment. Mobile WiFi will be extended in and around the vehicle to enable officers to connect to central systems or public internet when away from the station. This extended, reliable connectivity will allow them to access technology systems on the move and complete administration more quickly resulting in more time in the community. And as emergency networks like the UK ESN, and 4G/5G commercial networks progress, this experience becomes even more reliable and seamless.
Lastly, the ability to use mobile computing devices and its communications connectivity, such as Bluetooth, will allow officers to connect to a range of other specialist systems such as drones or even medical equipment such as ECG monitors, sharing vital information across the network.
The time is right for making the technology investment in the next generation of mobile computing devices and 4G/5G vehicle connectivity platforms. By choosing certified and tested solutions for new emergency networks such as the UK’s ESN, police forces will be ready to take advantage of these networks and the technology advancements they offer by simply switching out the SIM to move to the new network once available.
So, what should you consider when investing in mobile computing and 4G/5G vehicle networking technology?
The key thing is to work with your mobile computing partner to assess the best rugged devices and networking solutions certified for the new networks. Working with a partner like Panasonic TOUGHBOOK means you can handle your mobile device upgrades and 4G/5G vehicle networking as a single solution. This means a single process overall and, importantly, a simplified installation – saving both time and money.
Westbase.io has been working with Panasonic TOUGHBOOK and other partners for many years and, to date, have deployed in-vehicle networking solutions to tens of thousands of vehicles within some of the major police forces and other emergency services across Europe. Choosing the right solution will ensure police forces around the world can make the most of the next generation of emergency communication networks.