Check these 5 things before buying a professional application

Published: 20 Nov 2017

Need to save lives but also want to save time and money? Tick off these requirements and get the professional apps you need.

The mission critical professional world has clearly taken on board the hybrid concept for networks and devices.

This hybrid world is one in which current TETRA/Tetrapol solutions are used for mission-critical voice and data, with the LTE network serving non-critical broadband data.

A great way to embrace the new possibilities of broadband is to adopt mobile applications. But not just any apps - there are five key things to think about that will help you make the right choice.

1 Does it work the hybrid way?

Critical communications is becoming hybrid – complementing tried and trusted PMR networks with broadband. This is why hybrid devices are quickly becoming preferred over traditional PMR radios or simple smartphones.

And it’s not just the hardware. A unique solution exists which glues together the TETRA PMR API and Android. PMR users and Android apps can be brought together into a special ecosystem, making for a powerful combination that can really support innovative uses.

2 Is it the right app, provided by the right vendor?

When choosing a professional app, choose developers and app vendors with proven experience in mission critical applications. They will be accustomed to the specific considerations needed when creating critical apps for professionals.

3 Will it work in a tight situation?

Mission critical and public safety organizations are looking for solutions that:

  • boost real-time communication for critical environments
  • enhance crisis management
  • shorten response times
  • improve situational awareness.

 

In addition, the apps need to deliver very fast end-to-end communication. The user interface needs to be a “Mission Critical UX” – otherwise the app is useless when situations change rapidly. Ease of use is important, and of course, any mission critical application needs to allow the user to make the right decision in a split second.

4 Does it work end-to-end?

Apps must be able to work end-to-end, so developers must have proven experience of end-to-end solutions to win over professional purchasers.

Rescue worker with Tactilon Dabat

5 Last but not least, security comes first

Mission critical applications must be tested against any security threats and malware risks. They need to demonstrate they won’t break the mission critical PMR voice and data and don’t drain the battery life during field operations.

All mission critical solutions offered should be rigorously tested and certified during development to ensure the highest security and functionality standards.

=== Hand-picked content

When you are planning to buy a professional push-to-talk app - not just any app - use this handy checklist to identify the PTT app that meets your professional requirements.

DOWNLOAD CHECKLIST

A demand for integrated apps

So, what’s the big push in mission critical mobile applications?

Many critical communications companies have their own apps which use smartphones – they also need to have a push-to-talk radio in the field, too, meaning that staff need to carry around two devices all the time.

Security personnel with Tactilon Agnet, an advanced push-to-talk app

There is growing demand in the market for integrated messaging apps – tailor made for the needs of users, they would help, say, firefighters, police officers and rescue service workers do their jobs better and feel safer. And the apps are already there – according to the Airbus survey 2017-2018, only 22% of user organizations are not using apps at all – they’re just not very convenient to use with two devices.

Professional apps – users are ready

Professional users are ready for mobile apps which meet the five critical requirements. In fact, many professional organizations are using apps already in their daily routines, and most are also planning to introduce them in the future. The market for professional user apps looks rosy.

What professional apps developers should know

Professional users are pragmatic and open to adopting new capabilities. Unlike many in the consumer market, professionals are not especially biased towards a particular operating system and are not too concerned about the need for apps to support existing operational models. They are willing to change.

Tactilon Dabat, which combines a TETRA and LTE device in one, is encouraging developers to produce new mission-critical apps and accessories for it. The SmarTWISP developer programme aims to create an ecosystem of the best mission critical application and accessory providers and has already attracted more than 50 companies.

Are you on top of the latest trends in professional apps? The fourth Mobile Apps Survey by Airbus reveals them. Download the survey report - "Professional apps - what do users need right now?"

DOWNLOAD REPORT

You may also want to look at the findings from the previous survey into the state of professional apps - not just push to talk? Read the post "What everyone is saying about professional apps".

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This blog post was updated on 13 May 2019 to link to the latest survey report, on 07 Apr 2019 to add a tip about a handy checklist, and on 07 Aug 2018 to add a tip about another blog post.

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The Secure Communications blog gives you insights into critical communications future, secure and critical communications, public safety and other professional apps, current events, Tetrapol and TETRA radios, and active paging, for example.