Simplified infrastructure is expected be a hot topic during next week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. But as Peter Jarich, vice president with Current Analysis, points out, vendors can’t get too radical, as they start to differentiate their architectures.
I recently felt a renewed sense of confidence in federal disaster response leadership after speaking with Tim Manning, FEMA’s deputy administrator for protection and national preparedness. In fact if I was in a bind, he’d be the man I’d call.
After months of whispers and industry hand-wringing over a new standard for intrinsically safe portable radios that would require massive redesigns of many LMR systems, multiple key organizations publicly have expressed concern in the last week over the FM Approvals 3610 standard that is scheduled to become effective in less than 14 months.
Simply, consumer devices don’t cut it in terms of durability and battery life in the enterprise. David Krebs, analyst with VDC Research, says that as more enterprises embrace smartphones, the demand for more-ruggedized versions that can last longer will grow. Already, vendors are moving to meet this demand.
Under the new FM guidelines, intrinsically safe radios will need to use less power than the current 3 watts that is standard in the industry. Exactly how much less appears to be a matter of debate, as the implications of the FM Approval proposal have to be tracked through footnotes from multiple standards from at least two other organizations.
Sometimes buzz covers up other important stories. One such story concerns the upcoming changes by insurance company FM Global to the intrinsically safe (IS) standard for land-mobile radios. Those guidelines include a reduction of maximum power output for IS units from 3 watts to 0.5 watts for Class 1, Division 1 devices as of Jan. 1, 2012.