First Net Improving Communications

The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) was created to equip first responders with state-of-the-art communications tools that are available from FirstNet, the first nationwide interoperable wireless broadband network.

Many responders during station visits, city and state meetings, and training opportunities have discussed using applications over the FirstNet network. “Having vetted, standardized, secured apps on a secure network is extremely important,” said Phoenix Fire Department Deputy Chief Amos Chalmers.

FirstNet’s app strategy is built around:

  • Developing a rich set of apps for use by public safety
  • Ensuring public safety drives new app requirements for the Network
  • Proving the capabilities for the full life cycle of apps


FirstNet is incorporating public safety’s first-hand knowledge and creativity and is in the process of developing an app ecosystem. They are hoping to open the doors to more public safety officials by providing them with the tools to help with development.

“What excites me is that there are firefighters, EMTs, or patrol officers out there with ideas, and we need their ideas to greatly enhance officer safety,” said Captain Chris Lombard, a Seattle firefighter who also serves on the FirstNet Public Safety Advisory Committee.

Both AT&T and FirstNet have committed significant resources to improve communication among the first responder and the public safety community. So far, twenty states and territories have decided to opt-in to the FirstNet network.

The financial situation is that FirstNet with AT&T bear the financial risk associated with the network build-in in each state or territory. Therefore, no additional financial resources will be needed from states or territories to deploy or operate the network.

Go to to watch a video on FirstNet’s app strategy.

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