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Issue #2003 - 08 (March 2003)
(Updated Mar. 10, 2003)


Verizon Adds GPS, GIS to Wireless Field Service Software
Source: Mobile Village

Feb. 2003 Tampa, FL -- Verizon Information Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Verizon Communications, has added Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) capabilities to its software package that aims to help companies track and more effectively dispatch field forces.

The software -- called Automated Workforce Administration System (AWAS) -- now has GPS technology that uses U.S. satellites to obtain pinpoint location information. GIS technology depicts location data on maps to show locations relative to physical objects. The technology aims to improve dispatch efficiency and customer service for telecommunication service providers, utilities and other organizations with large field service fleets.

The enhanced AWAS tracks field technician movements using GPS transmitters located in service vehicles. Transmitters signal vehicle location data to GPS satellites, and location data is then interpreted by GIS mapping technologies to depict vehicle location. The vehicle's location is compared to the location of a customer's facilities, physical and logical area boundaries, landmarks and obstructions.

The GPS and GIS features enable work and the workforce to be displayed graphically in real-time, so the dispatcher can assess situations instantaneously. While the system enables companies to efficiently deploy workforces to areas where work is concentrated, if dispatchers identify a sudden trend in work levels, they can make quick decisions in response to changing needs.

AWAS is a component of Verizon IT's overall operations support systems and business support system software applications, and the new capability is offered as an option that includes mapping and reporting tools, as well as complete field force tracking.

Verizon says it has conducted exhaustive trials of the enhanced AWAS software within its own dispatch operations with successful results.

Source: Mobile Village
For more information: http://www.verizon.com

MobileInfo Comments and Advisory: Verizon is right in putting its marketing effort behind field force automation based on GPS and smart phones. It must have seen the success of Nextel's effort in this area. Many small service companies is all that they need at this stage for computer-assisted dispatch - know where their service representatives are and dispatch the closest one to a service call. AWAS is fairly sophisticated software with GPS/GIS support integrated in the package. Offering turn-key service for a fixed/variable monthly charge to service-oriented businesses is the right business model for carriers.

Note: This news release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and section 21E of Securities Exchange act of 1934 in USA. Similar provisions exist in other countries. There is no assurance that the stipulated plans of vendors will be implemented. MobileInfo does not warrant the authenticity of the information. Readers should take appropriate caution in developing plans utilizing these products, services and technology architectures.  All trademarks used in this summary are the property of their respective owners.

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