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OGC Membership Approves Open GeoSMS Standard for Encoding Location in Short Message Service (SMS)

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Release Date: 
26 January 2012

26 January 2012 - The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) membership has voted to adopt the candidate OGC Open GeoSMS Standard as an official OGC standard.

The OGC Open GeoSMS Standard provides developers with an extended Short Message Service (SMS) encoding and interface to facilitate communication of location content between different LBS (Location-Based Service) devices or applications. SMS is the open  text communication service standard most commonly used in phone, web and mobile communication systems for the exchange of short text messages between fixed line or mobile phone devices. The lightweight and easy to implement Open GeoSMS Standard facilitates interoperability between mobile applications and the rapidly expanding world of geospatial applications and services that implement OGC standard interfaces, encodings and best practices.

The Taiwan Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) contributed Open GeoSMS as a candidate standard to the OGC. Open GeoSMS is already in use in a number of deployed commercial applications in Taiwan as well as in several disaster response applications. ITRI donated software (an Android application) based on Open GeoSMS to the open source Sahana Disaster Management System for use in disaster warning, reporting and relief, and ITRI has offered the software for free download on the Android Market. The Sahana application establishes a synchronization mechanism between Sahana and one or more mobile devices. It provides communication between rescue teams and members and provides location updates to Sahana for relief and rescue coordination. There is also an Open GeoSMS enabled Ushahidi Android app.

The OGC Open GeoSMS Standard can be found at:

The OGC is an international consortium of more than 440 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC Standards support interoperable solutions that "geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC Standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at