4G LTE proves reliable, cost-effective, and flexible for public safety
Overseeing a public-sector agency network is not for the faint of heart — especially when it’s an agency that is responsible for public safety. For law enforcement agencies, the services are vital and the budgets are tight — and watched by the whole community. Even one extra minute in the field can save a life. With so many of a modern police department’s mission-critical duties tied to Internet connectivity, a reliable network is not a luxury, it's an absolute must. Cradlepoint works with these agencies to improve efficiency and public safety through cutting-edge technology.
5 reasons police departments and emergency services embrace 4G LTE
Police departments and emergency service organizations across the U.S. — even Europe — are seeing the benefits of 4G LTE solutions purpose-built for the public sector.
Here are five reasons why these agencies are embracing 4G LTE:
1. 4G LTE is reliable. IT managers for police departments know they can’t have downtime and delays getting their officers on the road — not with public safety at stake. Modern-day tools such as body cameras, tablets, and dashboard cameras are critical and require WiFi access. Law enforcement is finding that 4G LTE through ruggedized in-vehicle routing solutions are a reliable solutions to their connectivity challenges. They find it much more prudent than their former solutions of plugging in USB aircards into their laptops in the field, which are subject to damage and are consumer-grade solutions.
In the year following the Medford, OR, Police Department switch to Cradlepoint solutions, connectivity-related calls from officers dropped “almost to zero.”
2. 4G LTE is cost-effective. Always-on connectivity saves taxpayer funds by allowing officers to stay in the field for more hours every day. They can securely file and send report from anywhere rather than returning to the office. This greatly reduces dispatch times and creates efficiencies for emergency response in the field.
“Cradlepoint saves so much time for IT and so much frustration for the officers. Before, it wasn’t unusual for an officer to climb in their cruiser only to find that the modem was missing or broken. They would literally have to get out of the cruiser and either find another modem or find another car. With a Cradlepoint router secured in each trunk, officers know that when they get into their cruiser, they will be connected—end of story,” said Sharon Jensen, Manager of Planning and Analysis for the Boise, ID, Police Department.
Further, enterprise-grade 4G LTE from a variety of cellular carriers provides high-end connectivity at an affordable rate. Load-balancing capabilities within Cradlepoint solutions help too — by controlling data overage fees.
3. 4G LTE can handle real-time data and more. With the type of real-time situations that police regularly encounter, real-time applications are vital. Remote cloud management provides real-time analytics, such as GPS location information, that help keep officers safe.
Many departments have the tools to compress, encrypt and send video to dispatchers for a variety of reasons, including to provide command units with timely information about the whereabouts and operations of their officers during a call. But quick, efficient streaming in the field is only possible with excellent WiFi connectivity.
4. 4G LTE enables remote management — and "zero-touch" deployment and configuration. 4G LTE networking solutions gives law enforcement agencies an opportunity for additional savings through remote cloud management. Cradlepoint’s NetCloud Manager enables real-time monitoring and trouble-shooting, plus makes deployment and firmware upgrades vastly easier and quicker.
According to the Boise Police Department, the time spent accomplishing a firmware update for its 150-vehicle fleet plummeted from as many 160 man-hours to about 5 minutes.
5. 4G LTE is flexible. No one wants rigid, difficult-to-change solutions. Agencies must be able to analyze and respond to trends as they arise.
4G LTE carriers and related solutions can be replaced or scaled up or down extremely quickly. For example, Cradlepoint solutions take the handcuffs off law enforcement IT departments with carrier-agnostic independence. In other words, flexibility is at an all-time high.
“Our overall goal is to create a mobile-office environment for everyone out in the field. We want our police officers, firefighters, paramedics, code enforcement officers, inspectors—anyone working in the field — to have all the information technology they need to work together to get the most out of our tax dollars. Cradlepoint’s wireless technology is helping us get there," said Garry Beaty, CIO of the City of Boise, Idaho.
The more that police and emergency services organizations embrace the benefits of 4G LTE, the more they’re spreading the word throughout the first responder community. 4G LTE solutions by Cradlepoint are proving their worth for theses agencies, which is great news for communities everywhere.
To learn more about how Cradlepoint solutions enable first responders to stay connected and protected, check out this video.