PSBN Innovation Alliance

Why is a PSBN Needed?

A Public Safety Broadband Network (PSBN) is an important step in securing the telecommunications infrastructure for Canada – at an optimal cost point – and also to help extend digital connectivity to rural Canadians to enable access to 911 emergency services.

The concept of survivable and secure data is critical for First Responders. Unfortunately, due to the fundamental way that telcos design wireless broadband data networks for centralized service geared to maximizing shareholder profit, public carrier networks have been shown time and again as unable to handle the needs of Public Safety users in times of crisis, and are faced with reliability and capacity issues during times of surge demand.

There are countless anecdotes of public carrier networks being swamped and unavailable to civilians and First Responders during disasters, tornados, hurricanes, terrorist attacks and moments of crisis -due to the fact that these networks are the same ones used by millions of civilians during those same crises. When a disaster strikes, telco carrier networks become overloaded and fail to provide reliable access to those people who need data access most during a crisis - namely First Responders and Public Safety users.

Unfortunately, no technology has truly solved a key problem during moments of surge data load on wireless broadband networks - that of guaranteed access and guaranteed prioritization of data to First Responders. A means of deterministically overcoming access congestion and an ability to granularly and dynamically prioritize First Responder access on carrier networks is required but doesn't exist.

A robust and resilient PSBN will fix this problem - and provide bullet-proof secure access to data for agency staff during the critical moments that matter in emergencies. ISED Canada - the nation's regulatory agency that governs radio spectrum, has allocated 20MHz of RF spectrum in the 700MHz Bandclass 14 range dedicated and reserved for First Responders for precisely this reason.

Further, given Canada's recently re-confirmed status as among the most expensive jurisdictions on the planet in 2018 when it comes to broadband data rates - it is often the case that building survivable PSBN / PS-LTE networks can actually become a significant cost savings mechanism for Public Safety agencies.

All in all - private PS-LTE networks can help save lives and save cost for First Responder agencies, and given the data approaching with NG911 services and video, the PSBN concept and business model is becoming more important for government agencies to consider.

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