Apple has today made its Emergency SOS via Satellite feature available in more countries, giving iPhone 14 owners a new safety feature when they are away from cellular and WiFi connectivity.
The feature, which uses Globalstar satellites to send small amounts of data, is now available in the UK, France, Germany, and Ireland after previously launching in the United States and Canada.
The feature is available on all iPhone 14 devices including the iPhone 14 Pro and can be used when help is needed but no other method of communication is available. The feature will ask users a series of questions and then relay that information to a support person who will in turn contact emergency services.
This game-changing service connects users to relay centres staffed with Apple-trained emergency specialists who are ready to contact Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) — or emergency services call centres — on the user’s behalf to get them the help they need.
It’s a feature that could help save lives, especially for people who find themselves stuck at the top of a mountain or in the wilderness and would otherwise not be able to get help. “Being able to use a satellite connection to contact 999 or 112 if there is no cellular or Wi-Fi coverage is a breakthrough that Apple has brought to the general public with iPhone 14,” said John Anthony, the British Association of Public Safety Communications Officials’ president, in Apple’s announcement post.
Users can now test Emergency SOS via Satellite via the Settings app and see how the feature works to ensure they know what to expect should they need it later. The service is free for two years starting from the first activation of the iPhone, although Apple hasn’t yet said how much it will cost.
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