Keeping especially the women safety in mind the Directorate of Telecom (DoT) has made it mandatory for mobile phones to install the Global Positioning System (GPS) including the feature phones from January 1, 2018.
According to a report on PTI, the DoT had rejected the plea of mobile phone makers to use an alternative technology instead of the GPS for low-cost phones. In a statement made to the India Cellular Association (ICA), the DoT said,"GPS is the main tool regarding location details of the subscriber in an emergency, so the government has decided to implement it in all the mobile phone handsets from 1 January 2018 in a positive manner."
The ICA, which represents the mobile phone companies, had asked if A-GPS could be used to track the location of the people. But, DoT has said that A-GPS becomes problematic since it uses cellular towers for locating a caller, unlike GPS which uses a satellite. Handset makers had demanded the use of triangulation method which would allow them to track location in offline mode as well since the GPS pushes the cost of manufacturing.
As reported by the PTI, when ICA National President Pankaj Mohindroo was contacted he said, "The price of low-cost feature phones may rise by over 50 per cent as adding GPS system will require better configuration."
According to the Economic Times, the government has said that even emergency number, 112, cannot be used effectively. The government had previously made the panic button mandatory in phones from 1 January in 2017.