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Government plans to make GPS facility mandatory in feature phones

February 14, 2018

The government is likely to make global positioning system (GPS) mandatory in feature phones by withdrawing an exemption it granted earlier. The move will enable the government to roll out panic button facility on mobile phones, aimed at helping women in distress.

Earlier in 2016, the government ordered all mobile manufacturers to mandatorily provide panic button and GPS facility on cell phones to help women in distress, but feature phones and non-smart phones were given exemption in November 2017 after manufacturers pointed that it would raise the cost. However, the Department of Telecommunications has now assured the Ministry of Women and Child Development that it will reverse its November 2017 order and restore the circular of 2016.

The launch of panic buttons on a trial basis was to start from January 26, 2018 in Uttar Pradesh. However, opposition from handset manufacturers has delayed the process.


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