Emergency SOS via satellite, iPhone 14 feature you hope you’ll never use

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Apple begins shipping its newest mobile device, the Apple series iPhone 14, in the hands of its customers today, Friday, September 16, 2022. One of the latest features in this series is Satellite Emergency SOS. “Features that we hope will never be used”, as Apple presented in “Far Out”, ten days ago.

As the name suggests, this feature is indeed only useful in emergencies and when there is no signal. The case is like when you are in a remote place or climbing a mountain. Users can overcome this through an iPhone connection to a satellite orbiting in space.

A satellite that will transmit the mobile user’s messages and current location to an Apple relay center or directly to an emergency service provider.

The satellite emergency SOS function will only be available from November, with the iOS 16 update, and it too is limited to the United States and Canada. iPhone 14 users from other countries were unable to get this feature. They can get it as long as they are in the US and Canada.

Only the iPhone 14 range supports this satellite emergency function because they already have a new component (Customs), Upgrade, which is integrated into its antenna. This component allows the iPhone 14 to establish a direct connection with the satellite.

When a user takes advantage of the feature, sends a message via satellite, he will find five types of emergencies grouped by Apple. The five are vehicle, illness or injury, crime, loss or entrapment, and fire.

When choosing between them, the iPhone will ask for certain information in order to better understand the situation the user is facing. Then it will be guided to connect to the satellite.

Position determines satellite connection

What you need to know is that users need to be outdoors directly under a clear sky in order to get a stable satellite connection. Apple states that tall buildings, mountains, dense vegetation, or other objects may prevent such a connection.

When the user has obtained the correct position, the iPhone 14 device should be pointed towards the satellite position in the sky. For this there will be animated guides and graphics that will help on the phone screen. Only then, once the connection is established, will the satellite connect to an emergency service center or an Apple emergency relay center located in the United States or Canada, which then helps to contact the emergency service center.

The situation the user is facing along with other information such as location, remaining battery power and, if applicable, medical data will be automatically shared with the emergency service center. Including if the user has to move.

As long as a connection to the satellite can be established, users can indeed send and receive messages to and from the emergency service center.

Since satellite communication is slower than traditional cellular communication, Apple uses a text compression algorithm to be able to send user messages faster. Even so, it is still advisable to keep the message as short as possible.

“In an ideal position with a clear view of the sky and the horizon, a message can take 15 seconds to be sent, or even more than a minute if the position is under trees with low or medium density,” it reads. in a statement on the support.apple page.

Messages may take longer or even fail to connect to the satellite if trees are close together or the user is surrounded by other obstacles. In addition to environmental conditions, message length and satellite network status and availability can impact the time it takes for messages to arrive.

Another thing to keep in mind when using the Emergency SOS feature on the iPhone 14 is that there is a possible lag in satellite coverage. If this happens, the iPhone will immediately notify the user when the next satellite is available.


Read also:
Fans of the Pro variant dominate the first wave of iPhone 14 pre-orders

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Matilda Baker

"Evil pop culture fanatic. Extreme bacon geek. Food junkie. Thinker. Hipster-friendly travel nerd. Coffee buff."

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