Why hosted solutions make sense for public safety
What is in this article?
The other side of the coin
While hosted solutions have many benefits, there are some downsides. You could be disappointed if it turns out that the specific hosted solution you chose does not fit your PSAP’s needs. Hosted solutions can address certain core functionality and are configurable within pre-set options, but service providers routinely do not customize them. PSAPs also may have less control over a hosted application because it is not sitting at their premises, but do have more control over operational costs — something many PSAPs believe is more important.
But perhaps the biggest downside involves hosted solutions’ reliance on network connectivity. You should always ask if the service provider has a backup plan in the event of a network or Internet outage.
Does reliance on the network make hosted solutions inherently less reliable? Not necessarily, because service providers can solve this problem by providing geographic redundancy that includes network redundancy. The fact is, because so many users collectively rely on hosted systems, service providers are likely to provide higher levels of built-in redundancy than average end users could afford for on-premise systems.
Given this, the current financial landscape and looming NG-911 transition likely will make hosted solutions more commonplace in the near future. Hosted solutions have the potential to help PSAPs save on IT costs and can help them do more with less, via access to more powerful and reliable technologies.
Diamond Chaflawee is director of marketing and business development for NICE Systems.