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Dec 10, 2021 12:06:21 PM

Emergency Positioning Requirements in Europe

Posted by Isolde Decker-Lucke

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In Europe the need for accurate location for emergency calls has resulted in the creation of AML (Advanced Mobile Location) which uses handset-based location solution using GPS, cellular, and Wi-Fi sensors. The solution can be supported across a variety of mobile OS, including low-cost devices not running iOS or Android with GMS services. The AML started in Europe and is strongly supported by EENA (European Emergency Number Association) and has been adopted in many countries outside Europe, like in the UAE and Australia. The AML solution allows flexibility when determining emergency numbers depending on the country (for example 112 but also 999, 100, or 101). The other major difference in this solution is that emergency fix is typically reported over user plane (SMS or HTTPs) to the operator network instead of control plane.

Mandatory Requirements for Emergency Location In European Countries

As of December 2020, the European Electronic Communications Code (Directive 2018/1972/EC) makes it mandatory for all the Member States of the European Union to make use of handset derived location when locating people requesting emergency services. In March 2022, all the smartphones sold in the European single market will be required to offer the possibility to send handset-derived location information of the caller to the emergency services. This is already the case for many of the smartphones, but wireless operators will be required to provide high precision for feature phones as well. The core requirements for the European wireless network operators are overall similar to US - computing device-based hybrid fix that requires access to GPS and global Wi-Fi, and Cellular databases.

Skyhook Can Help Meet Emergency Positioning Requirements in Europe

All these requirements are the core functionality of Skyhook’s Precision Location solution, which has been designed to meet these requirements and provide accurate and precise location in many environments. Skyhook is known as the pioneer of the modern-day standard for mobile device positioning, and our device-based hybrid positioning algorithm uses the best combination of Wi-Fi & Cell or GPS signals to precisely calculate the device location. With over 17 years of technical expertise, and partnerships with industry leaders like KaiOS, Kyocera and Qualcomm, Skyhook is a great choice for emergency positioning. 
Skyhook has partnered with major chipset and OS vendors to provide: 
  • Stand-alone DBH fix (without any cooperation or support from wireless network) 
  • Global coverage Emergency positioning even when GNSS/Wi-Fi receivers are turned-off
  • Respect for user privacy by using location information only for emergency reporting

Find out more about how Skyhook works with mobile phone manufacturers.