To FCC is working on enabling 911 emergency services to receive texts, photos, and videos.
At the 2011 APCO Conference in Philadelphia
August 10 , FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski
announced his five step action plan to chart the transition to Next Generation 9-1-1 services (NG911).
According to the FCC's August 10th press release
Would you use your cell phone to text message an emergency?
- NG911 supports seamless, end-to-end IP-based communication of emergency-related voice, text, data, photos, and video between the public and public safety answering points (PSAPs).
- NG911 systems will continue to support the legacy 911 system on a transitional basis for as long as is necessary.
- NG911 multi-media capabilities expand accessibility (e.g., to persons with disabilities) and give all consumers more calling options in emergencies.
- PSAPs receiving text, data, photos, and videos can assess emergencies more quickly and respond more effectively.
- IP-based architecture provides more flexibility and resiliency than the legacy circuit-switched 911 system.