Verizon Frontline and THOR tap 5G for disaster response

Verizon's Cory Davis joins the podcast to discuss how the service provider is addressing challenges first responders face, such as interdepartmental communication between public safety agencies and across different networks, and gives a preview of new tactical response tools such as "THOR."

More on THOR later, but first, Davis, director of Public Safety Operations for Verizon, provides insight into Verizon's Public Safety Communications Survey, and what the results reveal about how new devices and networking technologies can better assist first responders in the field.

"Ninety-three percent of first responders stated that coordination between agencies is critical," says Davis. "There are so many resources and task force teams that come to these events that it's so critical that they have interoperability and can speak, share data and share land/mobile radio communications with each other."

In addition, this summer, the Verizon Response Team (VRT) launched THOR, the Tactical Humanitarian Operations Response, which is a prototype response vehicle with mobile 4G/5G connectivity and radios. THOR also includes a tethered drone for aerial views, a rear command center, a camera, a six-seat cabin and an exterior touch screen display.

"THOR is the world's first mobile, private 5G and MEC disaster response vehicle. It's the next-generation of mobile communication disaster response," says Davis. "We can take THOR out and create a 5G bubble network – ultra wideband network – with speeds of 1 to 2 Gigabits, and as the technology gets better those speeds will increase, and we can set THOR up anywhere in the world."

— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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