Welcome to 2014 – a year that promises to be pivotal for all of us involved in and around Critical Communications. As we move ever closer to realistic availability for Critical Communications Mobile Broadband services, we must not forget that TETRA is, and will continue for a long time yet to be, the field operative’s best friend and lifeline in a crisis. Instant and reliable voice communication is the most vital of all mission-critical forms of communication, especially when all other services are overloaded or simply unavailable.
All of the above being said, the promise of mission critical mobile broadband offers a fantastic array of possibilities, particularly for enhanced situational awareness tools, video streaming services and so on.
Over the past year we have heard a lot about the potential benefits to critical users of the likes of smart apps, social media and video streaming. But what are the big talking points of 2014 going to be? Well, in my view if 2013 was the year of getting excited, 2014 will be the year we really start to see progress towards our common goals globally. As 3GPP, CCBG, ETSI and various other working groups push ahead with their work, and senior users continue to show a willingness to engage with and embrace new technologies, we may find ourselves in a very different place at the start of 2015.
Through my work with the TCCA and as chairman of the CCBG I have been closely involved for some years in the Critical Communications World Series of events (formerly TETRA World Congress). Over time, these events have provided not only a place to reunite with old friends and colleagues and to make new contacts, but also a true forum to discuss ideas, drive initiatives and really achieve something tangible. If you’ve been before, then you will already be familiar with the experience.
We begin the 2014 Calendar of events in March with Critical Communications Europe. There is a lot to celebrate in European Critical Communications. From the oldest to the largest TETRA networks, to some extremely adept users getting the absolute maximum out of TETRA’s rich set of features and facilities. So it is with great anticipation that we finally have a European focused event. For full details, go to the website at www.criticalcommunicationseurope.com and have a look for yourself. Of course yours truly will be giving an update on the work and progress of the CCBG as well as running proceedings on Day 1.
As well as the conference, the Critical Communications Exhibition will also be present at the Krasnapolsky Hotel. So I’m looking forward to getting my hands on the industry’s newest hardware and solutions. I am also reliably informed by the production team that there are a few surprises yet to be announced. So please remember to keep an eye out and look over the details of the event. The last thing you want is to be left out of what will be a very special event.
Finally, but by no means least, we shall be aligning the next CCBG plenary meeting with Critical Communications Europe and running it at the same Krasnapolsky Hotel venue on Thursday 13th March. So delegates to both events will have the opportunity to stay bang up to date with all the current developments and thinking throughout the critical communications world.
With all of the foregoing in mind, I sincerely hope to see you in Amsterdam for what promises to be an eventful few days in March.
Chair, TCCA Critical Communications Broadband Group (CCBG)
Chairman, Critical Communications Europe