Polaris WLS Is The Only Low-Cost Software Location Technology

Jul 31, 2012

Source: EFY Times

Polaris WLS Is The Only Low-Cost Software Location Technology

With ten years of expertise in providing location based services, Polaris Wireless is undoubtedly a strong player in the segment. EFYTimes spoke to Srinivas Varadarajan, vice president, sales and business development for Asia, Polaris Wireless about their business plans and the impact of the latest DoT mandate.

1) How do you think that the government or security agencies can make use of LBS?

PW: Polaris Wireless high-accuracy location enables government agencies to take a major leap forward in their efforts to locate and track known and suspected criminals and terrorists. Our Altus application suite offers capabilities such as tracking, geo-fencing, mass analytics etc. to meet the mission-critical needs of law enforcement and intelligence agencies. For example, Indian LEAs and intelligence agencies can create a custom geo-fenced area and receive alerts when designated targets enter or exit the geo-fence. With this capability, intelligence agencies and LEAs can protect sensitive buildings and other facilities from attack by terrorists or other criminals.

2) Why do you think surveillance is important in today's world, especially in a country like India?

PW: As the global leader in high-accuracy, software-based wireless location solutions, Mountain View, California-based Polaris Wireless is the ideal partner for enabling location-dependent public safety and value added location-based services.

In the decade since Polaris Wireless began offering location technology to wireless operators for emergency call management, numerous lives have been saved as a result of better location accuracy. Similarly, Polaris Wireless location surveillance products are increasingly in demand in Asia, the Middle East/Africa region, and elsewhere as governments seek to protect their citizens through the use of advanced technology. India is well-positioned to benefit from Polaris Wireless global experience.

3) How exactly does Polaris wireless work?

PW: In India, wireless networks are increasingly viewed as a vital conduit for mission-critical and public safety information, such as emergency calls and anti-crime/anti-terrorism activities. Polaris Wireless offers the most cost-effective, quickest time-to-market, software-based wireless location solution. It is deployed on a standard computer server (in-network or hosted) and requires no hardware additions to the base stations, in contrast with other network-based technologies such as U-TDOA (uplink time-difference-of-arrival), which requires new radio hardware. Thus, the initial investment in the Polaris Wireless solution is below the cost of a U-TDOA solution for a comparably-sized network.

4) How much has the company invested in India?

PW: We consider the Indian market to be very attractive for LBS growth and are focused on working with partners to deploy our solutions in wireless carrier networks. Once that is done, Indian wireless subscribers will be able to benefit from applications that high-accuracy location enables, such as navigation and location-based advertising. In addition, we hope to work with Indian government agencies to deploy our solutions to enable mission-critical applications such as emergency calling and anti-crime surveillance.

The Bengaluru-based Polaris Wireless Center of Excellence is one of two global development centers for our company. The work done there benefits our clients throughout the world. With the growth we are forecasting for 2012 and beyond, we plan to expand our operations in Bangalore and in other parts of India.

5) Can you define what Lawful Intercept means to Polaris Wireless and its customers?

PW: Polaris Wireless provides a wireless location solution (not lawful intercept, which involves obtaining communications network data, such as call content) that utilises its patented and standards-based RF Pattern Matching solution, Polaris Wireless Location Signatures. Polaris WLS is the only high accuracy, software-only location technology that is low cost, scalable, and reliably provides high accuracy across all types of environments. This solution is able to locate a wireless device to an accuracy measure of 50 meters, even in urban areas and indoors. After installing the Polaris Wireless solution in the operator's network server, all mobile devices of any type can be located and tracked as part of anti-crime and anti-terrorism efforts.

6) Where all do you see the market opportunity for LBS?

PW: India is a well-known hub for wireless communications, and is regarded to have the second largest wireless network subscriber base in the world. The future of wireless is taking place here. The statistics support this assertion. Mumbai-based market research firm Ovum predicts significant growth of location-based services (LBS) in India, bolstered by an 80 percent annual increase in 3G connections over the next five years. Another key driver is interest from the key demographic of high-value early adopters, such as working professionals and the burgeoning youth sector, which is expected to grow to about 150 million subscribers in 2012. Smartphone adoption among youth, a key indicator of LBS growth in other markets, is 10 percent in India, according to Nielsen Research, which considers India a high-growth market.

7) What is the take of the operators on the DoT mandate?

PW: In the next 6-12 months, if the top operators implement LBS then they will have a lot of enterprises and services that will be accessed by hundreds of millions of end-users. The truth is that technologies are there, well-matured enough to be deployed in very complex networks like the ones in India. So we think with the willingness of the operators to launch technology first, services later we can make it happen and obviously, we are here as a technology product provider to help them. And we have important partnerships in India like the Tech Mahindra that can help us deploy the product fast, as they have large operations in the market, know the networks very well and so they would easily deploy our products.

8) What are the challenges that your company is facing in India?

PW: We have been very pleased by both our experience in establishing our Bengaluru Centre of Excellence, which facilitates our worldwide operations efforts, and in launching our strategic partnership with Tech Mahindra/CanvasM. We are confident that we have the right resources and relationships to respond to any potential bottlenecks and to take part in the impressive growth of LBS in India.

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