APCO has Apps

Dragonforce. ERG. Hybrid Vehicle Extrication. Adopt-a-Hydrant. All these apps and more exist in the technological world public safety works in. Now, thanks to APCO, you can find them all in one place.

Blueforce Tactical (BTAC) for Android also looks like a practical app. Written up as, “a patented mobile software application that enables the rapid formation of tactical teams and facilitates rich information sharing amongst team members using Android Smartphones and tablets brought to the tactical environment. The software enables shared situational awareness and extended presence of people, sensors, and services.” This app includes a secure information exchange between users using standard cellular, 3G/4G/LTE, WIFI, WiMAX, satellite, mesh and/or mobile ad-hoc networks.  (It’s right about here that my non-techie brain starts to wander off.) Along with these two apps are dozens more that offer local and national utilization.

My Personal Favorite

Trying to wrangle my brain back from its technological fog, I decided to just browse the apps and find ones I liked. My personal favorite: Adopt-a-Hydrant. Being a volunteer firefighter who came from a very snowy region of the country (I now deal with rain not snow), I appreciated this app being among those chosen for AppComm. Adopt-a-Hydrant “maps the locations of fire hydrants so volunteers can find and dig them out during snow storms.” My techie friend’s favorites are Sting and Dragonforce. (He did provide a caveat that these would be pretty cool IF they worked well.)

One of the biggest issues users are expressing currently is that the apps listed are predominately local and would have no practical use outside that area. As more and more apps are added, this will increase the local apps but also those that have universal appeal and use.

Since its unveiling, APCO has gotten a lot of feedback indicating the need for such a website and the positive impact it will have. AppComm’s hope is that this website will be the “go-to” place for all public safety applications. Even as a non-techie, I think it’s a pretty cool site.


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