Telecommunications industry members are working together collaboratively on numerous projects that benefit consumers. In 2017, the number of industry initiatives that benefit the public has reached a new high.
Two vital new emergency services have launched this year; enabled through industry collaboration. In May, an emergency caller location system was launched, which helps emergency services locate over 1.5 million 111 calls made by mobile each year. This is particularly useful where the caller either does not know their exact location, or is unable to provide the information for any reason.
Additionally, the Emergency Mobile Alert system launched this month. The new public alert system is the result of collaborative efforts between the New Zealand telecommunications industry and a range of public service bodies such as Civil Defence, NZ Police, and Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Individual mobile providers have made significant changes to processes and systems, so warning of imminent threats can now be broadcast simultaneously, using a dedicated signal.
A further initiative by the industry, facilitated by TCF, is the Vulnerable End-Users Code. The code, which will be released for public comment soon, will set out a process for the industry to recognise those customers who have a vulnerability and a dependency on fixed-line or fixed wireless services for reasons of health or safety.
These initiatives join Landline and Mobile Number Porting, IMEI Mobile Blacklisting, and scam prevention, as some of the excellent examples of the industry working together, facilitated by the TCF, to create industry-wide solutions for the good of the country.
By Geoff Thorn, CEO NZ Telecommunications Forum