As Published In
Oracle Magazine
July/August 2008

COMMUNITY: Embedded Oracle

Mobile Matters

Oracle powers crime-fighting devices and better cell phone coverage.

Armed with Information

Law enforcement personnel have a new tool in their crime-fighting repertoires: mobile devices that deliver critical—and even lifesaving—information during the course of a citation, chase, arrest, or investigation.

Using handheld devices, smart phones, or mobile PCs equipped with the Mobile Unit Field Reporting System (MUFRS) from Mobile BIS, law enforcement officers can significantly increase the efficiency of everything from issuing traffic citations to tracking and arresting criminal suspects. During the course of a routine traffic stop or in-depth field investigation, MUFRS delivers historical information in real time about a person, vehicle, location, warrant, and more. It supports multimedia data such as photos, video, and even voice recordings, to aid officers in making a positive identification.

MUFRS uses Oracle Database Lite Mobile Server to synchronize data bidirectionally between Oracle Database Lite Client on the mobile device and an Oracle Database 10g server running a centralized records management application. Officers in the field can use their mobile devices even in areas with no wireless connectivity. When they return to an area with coverage, wireless data communication is re-established between the device and the centralized repository. When arrests or citations are made, the information is transmitted to the central server and records management system, where it is tracked and integrated into the local court and police jurisdiction's application software. Meanwhile, the citation or charge is automatically printed at the scene on a wireless Bluetooth printer.

Armed with information, law enforcement officers are not only gaining efficiencies in their day-to-day duties but also helping to make their communities safer.

Breaking Cell Phone Barriers

Today's cellular phones let you do a lot more than just make phone calls. Third-generation (3G) cellular technology delivers wireless data services to mobile phones at broadband speeds and allows subscribers to quickly browse Web pages, stream music, watch on-demand video, download and play 3-D games, videoconference, and more. That's all great—until you lose your cellular signal inside your house.

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 Mobile BIS


More than one-third of all mobile voice and data traffic originates in the home. However, it's particularly hard for 3G signals to penetrate buildings, due to how walls absorb most of the radio frequency energy.

Enter femtocells, such as those made by ip.access. The company's Oyster 3G is a low-power femtocell base station for homes that provides high-speed end-to-end voice and data access inside buildings where the thickness of walls makes obtaining a 3G signal difficult. Oyster 3G creates a cell inside the home by tapping into the subscriber's broadband service. When a subscriber is at home, the Oyster 3G femtocell automatically takes over the session from the macro network outdoors and routes it through the subscriber's broadband connection to provide better reception and faster data speeds.

The Oyster 3G system embeds Oracle Berkeley DB as a self-maintaining database engine with automatic failure recovery and replication to guarantee 99.999 percent carrier-grade availability. Oracle Berkeley DB delivers high performance, scalability, and availability in a small-footprint, zero-administration package, ideal for Oyster 3G's technical requirements.

As 3G adoption picks up, look for femtocell use to do the same. Industry analysts predict that there will be more than 150 million femtocell users by 2012.

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