Alert Delay
  • I use the iPhone 5 and there is a delay from the actual dispatch of a call to the time I receive an alert on my phone. Is anyone else have this problem? Is there a setting that can be looked at? The delay is almost 1 minute. Those who are using an Android do not have thus delay. Any suggestions!!
  • Having the same issue with long delays. iPhone 5 AT&T. Lately I haven't been getting the calls until I'm on scene... Others with iPhone have little to no delay.
  • My whole station is having this problem. We receive a standard text message from our 911 Center and they also send it out to Active911 so many of us are getting two alerts for one call. At first the Text and the Active911 were at the same time of dispatch and sometimes even before our pagers went off. Within the past 2-3 months we have been receiving our text at the same time, but our Active911 wasn't arriving until 5 minutes later. Any idea what is going on?
  • Our servers are incredibly fast at processing the calls, averaging less than 3 seconds to process and send out a call once we receive it from the dispatch. The number one cause of most delays is email routing from dispatch to us. I will use an unnamed dispatch center as an example.

    About two months ago, this dispatch center upgraded their system. doing this caused big problems with cell networks. They are sending out text messages that are getting blocked by the cell carriers because the carrier interprets the large number of calls to be spam or an attack on their local network. To get around this, the dispatch center routed the outgoing calls through their county email server. While this worked for getting the calls out, it slowed a lot of calls down, including the email bound for Active911.

    We can look at the headers for all the incoming messages and see the timestamps for when the message is handed off to a new server. The dwell time for the message within the outgoing email server for this county was often between 3 and 15 minutes, sometimes much longer.

    There is little we can do to speed up the dispatch time in cases like this. We do not even know the message exists until our servers get a hold of the message. What we can do is help you and your dispatch center trouble shoot the issue. In the headers we see with the incoming messages, we can see which servers are holding or slowing down the message. This allows the county dispatch to pinpoint a server and look into what it is doing with the message. A lot of times they can add excepted addresses to the firewall or filters to allow it to pass through unhindered.

    Something like this is happening to your department, Nathan.

    James and Brian, it looks like the messages are coming in in great time and are being sent out with in a second or two. This means we need to look at connections and carriers. Apple devices have the most problems with this. They prefer to send and receive data over wifi. If you have a wifi connection and a 4G connection but the wifi connection is weak, Apple devices typically won't receive or send data. It ignores the 4G connection and concentrates on the barely connected wifi. This just shows that the devices prefer wifi.

    Most people have great wifi and 4G connection though, right? What most people don't realize is that firewalls often block the ports needed to send Apple Push Notification service messages and some times even Google Cloud Messaging ports. Android is normally not as sensitive as devices seem to switch back and forth between 4G and wifi pretty easily.

    Information on the ports and IP addresses that need to be open are found on Apple's support site at:

    The ports that GCM uses are 5228, 5229, 5230.

    To see if maybe it is the wifi blocking the calls, try disabling your wifi for a while and see if it will send it over your 4G or have your system admin add these ports as exceptions in their firewall.
    Active911, Inc