Public safety software includes any software used to facilitate keeping people safe, managing law enforcement records, dispatching law enforcement, and facilitating a variety of first-responder tasks and functions. But public safety software is no longer limited to computer aided dispatch centers. Today, the computer aided dispatch center can be in your pocket… and if you’re a law enforcement officer, there is public safety software that can travel with you everywhere you go.
The transition of public safety software from computer aided dispatch centers and law enforcement agency infrastructure to the individual smartphone just makes good sense. President Obama was the first president to insist that he be allowed to retain the use of a smartphone (and a special, secure smartphone was created for his use). The moment that happened, the smartphone became, not merely a convenience, but a widely recognized personal data assistant and communications tool. Of course, the fact that one prominent politician advocated for a smartphone did not make the smartphone an invaluable tool that can also run public safety software. It became more and more important in daily life and popular culture well before the general public realized what was happening.
Today, though, the smartphone is inextricable from popular culture and daily life in the Western world. According to Zippia.com, the overwhelming majority of adults in the United States own and carry a smartphone (85% at last count). The average American spends a staggering 5 hours and 24 minutes using the phone every day, checking it almost 100 times a day (on average). There are almost 7 billion smartphones across the globe, representing 86% of the global population. And every single one of those phones has a public safety software application.
Specifically a smartphone – including otherwise inactive smartphones in the United States – can be used to dial 911, connecting the caller with emergency dispatch (which is, today, computer aided dispatch). But on the other side, the law enforcement and first responder side, public safety software programs like Caliber Public Safety’s PocketCop help keep personnel safe and facilitate their work… all contained within a smartphone.
PocketCop, for example, delivers faster access to critical information necessary to protect the community and increase tactical awareness. From this public safety software application, the officer can run a variety of queries (ranging from vehicle registration and wanted person information to boat, gun, and commercial vehicle licenses), access computer-aided dispatch, track active incidents and incident histories, and even log mileage and remarks. Public safety software like PocketCop includes messaging applications that help keep personnel better connected, offering a variety of other benefits, again all from a handheld smartphone.
According to Caliber’s own surveys, 79% of agencies issue cell phones. A third of participants indicated they had deployed and support other apps in addition to PocketCop, meaning use of handheld smartphones is common. In feedback from affected personnel, time and time again the respondents came back with the fact that a smaller, handheld device — that is, the modern smartphone — made it easier to keep computer-aided dispatch right there in hand.
The ability to get public safety software information on the go, with all the functions needed right then and there, proved invaluable. Rather than being stuck in front of a laptop or dependent on a vehicle-mounted system, personnel with PocketCop in hand can “get out of the car” and do what they need to do… all with their computer-aided dispatch and other public safety software information on their person. In a car, on foot, even on a motorcycle or bicycle, PocketCop travels with personnel who need the information public safety software provides.
Almost all of us is already carrying a smartphone. While civilians already have a form of public safety software available to them in the form of apps and phone calls that can connect them to assistance, public safety software like PocketCop takes this to the next level. Such software keeps officers and first responder personnel safer and more informed while reducing response times. This, in turn, keeps the whole community safer… and makes life better for everyone involved.