High-accuracy LBS key to offsetting E911 costs for carriers

High-accuracy LBS key to offsetting E911 costs for carriers

Frost & Sullivan believes that US carriers can leverage the billions of dollars required to implement this mandate, to produce commercial location-based services. Potentially a lucrative revenue stream, LBS presents carriers with a way to differentiate services in an increasingly competitive mobile environment.

According to Frost & Sullivan's recently completed whitepaper – E911 & LBS: Addressing the new location accuracy gapwith annual LBS revenues in the US projected to reach $3.5 billion by 2013, many high-revenue services such as navigation, fleet management, friend/family finder, mobile social networking and local search require higher accuracy from the network.

To achieve higher levels of accuracy, Frost & Sullivan suggests that carriers seriously consider deploying a hybrid location determination solution that employs complementary coverage capabilities.

Currently, no single technology alone meets the location accuracy needs of LBS applications and E911 across all calling environments. Although A-GPS is often hailed as the cure-all for LBS, carriers often must fall back on Cell ID or similar network technologies to compensate for coverage gaps, which include indoor environments and dense urban settings.

Frost & Sullivan's research indicates that Wireless Location Signatures (WLS) location determination solution created by Polaris Wireless offers a set of capabilities and benefits that deserves serious evaluation by wireless carriers. On a standalone basis, WLS provides high location accuracy for the majority of cellular calls – those made indoors or in dense urban environments.

Looking forward, combining the highly complementary WLS and A-GPS technologies into a hybrid solution will enable carriers to obtain superior location accuracy across the complete range of calling environments.

Today, US wireless subscriber penetration stands at more than 75%, with more than 250 million Americans using cell phones. Recognising the growing enthusiasm for location-enabled wireless applications and anticipating the ongoing resolution of various market and technological issues, Frost & Sullivan forecasts a sizable LBS market opportunity in the US.

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