NYC to make 911 work with picture messaging

Jan 19 2007 - 04:24 PM ET | Camera, Unique

New York City will become the first city in the country to upgrade its 911 and 311 call centers to handle picture messaging. Landline callers will also be able to transmit images to operators via the web.

“Imagine someone caught in a hostage situation transmitting pictures or video,” he added. “It’s just an incredible amount of information that can be gathered from fairly simple technology.”

Multimedia messaging (MMS) is built into nearly every camera phone and makes it simple to send an image (or other multimedia content) to either a phone number or email address. The adoption of MMS has been slowed by interoperability problems between carriers. While international MMS is still hit and miss, US carriers have worked together to improve the situation domestically.