Trending: Smart technology needs to advance for emergency services - Knoxville News Sentinel

Modern conveniences of smart technology are endless.

With the touch of a button on your smartphone you can have a pizza delivered to you or you can have a taxi pick you up. There's probably even a service that delivers the pizza to the taxi.

You can use locator services on your phone to find the nearest hair salon, or set up notifications to be informed of deals when in the vicinityof certain stores.

It seems everyone who wants to sell you a product or get you to use a service can find you using the locator service on your phone.

So why is it so hard for emergency responders to locate callers from their smartphones?

Google is working on it.

TheEuropean Emergency Number Associationhas been trying to upgrade location pinging withhelp from Google.

The new system is calledAdvanced Mobile Location, and is based on making smartphones recognize when emergency calls are being made and turn on global navigation satellite systems and Wi-Fi.

The smartphone then sends an SMS to emergency services with the location of the caller.

Google created Emergency Location Service in Android in July 2016. The service is supported by whichever network you use, and your location is sent from your phone to emergency services when you dial an emergency number,according to the Google blog.

The location technology is the same as what is used by the apps on your phone and is currently in use in parts of the UK, Estonia, Lithuania and parts of Austria.

In January the programsaved the father of an 8-year-old boy in Lithuaniawho didn't know his address or phone number. The operator received an SMS through Google's Android feature after the call was made. With AML they were able to locate the call within a radius of nearly 20 feet.

Here in the U.S., a dispatch center in Texas has also experimented with smart technology with an app that can better pinpoint locations for emergency personnel.

Calling it "Uber for 911," Tarrant County in Fort Worth became thefirst in the U.S. to use the SirenGPS mobile app.

During thecountrywide five-hour AT&T outagetwo weeks ago, some SirenGPS test calls came up on dispatchers' screens, while emergency calls from AT&T customers were not received.

The reality is Uber could find you faster and easier than traditional 911 because they use an app-based product with GPS technology, and thats a huge problem when more than 80 percent of our calls are now coming from cellphones, regional dispatch manager Warren Dudley said.

SirensGPS delivers the caller's location for more than 90 percent of calls, according to theStar Telegram.

Certainly Fort Worth isn't the only area in the U.S. to experiment with smart technology for emergency services, but it seems to be taking awhile for it to be implemented in more areas.

Hopefully Knoxville will soon see some advancements like this.

It seems the discussion has been underway for a while, but it's not quite there yet.

Angela Gosnell is an online producer for knoxnews.com. She maybe reached at 865-342-6351 or angela.gosnell@knoxnews.com.

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