TMCnet - World's Largest Communications and Technology Community




When Crisis Strikes, Paging Networks Look Better than Cellular

August 30, 2011

By Narayan Bhat, TMCnet Contributor

Wireless communications solutions vendor USA Mobility (News - Alert), Inc. has expressed surprise that its paging networks had remained fully operational though cellular networks suffered severe disruptions following an earthquake in the East Coast last week.

When an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.8 struck the U.S. state of Virginia on August 23, cellular networks struggled with a sudden surge in call volumes. Many people in the affected area said they had been unable to get cell phone access for a period of about an hour immediately after the quake.

Springfield, Virginia-based USA Mobility said the incident had proved once again that paging networks were more reliable than cellular networks.

The vendor’s CEO, Vincent D. Kelly, said paging’s value remained high for critical messaging because of its distinct advantage over broadband, which becomes unable to meet bandwith demands in emergency situations.

Paging networks, according to USA Mobility, have three major advantages over cellular networks: (1) signal strength -- up to 3,500 watts versus less than 100 watts for cellular; (2) simulcast transmission from multiple towers versus single tower for cellular; and (3) satellite connectivity versus only landline telephone connectivity for cellular.

It is because of these factors paging networks successfully complete 1-way and 2-way communications without interruption during crisis and disaster scenarios.

 “While cellular networks can still be rendered inoperable during crisis, as we witnessed last week, paging has been an integral part of hospital and other first responder work flow and critical response processes nationwide for more than 30 years,” Kelly added.

Paging networks outperformed cellular networks in many occasions including 9/11, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the Minnesota bridge collapse in 2007, and the earthquake in Southern California in 2008.

“Given the proven reliability of paging networks, combined with their low operating costs compared to cellular, we believe paging can and should play a prominent role in the development and implementation of a national emergency response system,” Kelly said.

USA Mobility operates the largest one-way paging and advanced two-way paging networks in the United States.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.

Narayan Bhat is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Narayan’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves


More MPLS Featured Stories

Technology Marketing Corporation

2 Trap Falls Road Suite 106, Shelton, CT 06484 USA
Ph: +1-203-852-6800, 800-243-6002

General comments: [email protected].
Comments about this site: [email protected].


© 2023 Technology Marketing Corporation. All rights reserved | Privacy Policy