FP StaffNov 14, 2022 13:33:22 IST
Sometime later this month, Apple will officially launch the feature that lets iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro users to connect and communicate with satellites during emergencies. Apple will officially launch their Emergency SOS Via Satellite Feature for a fee in the United States and Canada, but only after two years. The first two years, it will be a free service for every iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro user.
Users of the iPhone 14 will be able to connect to a satellite overhead when they are without cell coverage to send a quick text message of emergency and communicate their position with loved ones. As part of the Advanced Manufacturing Fund, Apple announced a $450 million commitment to enable the satellite functionalities. The business in charge of operating the satellites, Globalstar, will receive a large portion of that money.
The United States and Canada will be the first countries to offer emergency SOS through satellite. For the first two years, the service is provided without charge; the cost after that period has not yet been disclosed. Although Apple has not confirmed specifics of any more rollouts, it is anticipated to appear in other regions early next year. L and S spectrum bands are used in emergency SOS communications with satellites in orbit.
The way the system works is that an on-screen UI will assist the user in pointing their phone in the right direction. The iPhone user will need a clear view of the sky in order to be able to connect to a satellite. The iPhone 14 will communicate with one of the 24 Globalstar satellites that are orbiting the planet thanks to the Apple-Globalstar partnership.
Then, a message is sent to ground stations via the satellite. The message will be routed straight to local emergency services if it is sent in an area where SMS communication is supported by those services. If not, relay centre workers employed by Apple will contact them on your behalf.
Satellite connectivity may also be utilized to send the person’s position to the Find My app in addition to SOS text messages. Customers of the iPhone 14 will be able to use these features in a few weeks. Uncertainty surrounds whether the function will be available as part of iOS 16.1 with a server-side change or call for a software update.
In the years to come, this feature will be made available in countries which allow such connections to a satellite privately. In India, though, telcos and smartphone manufacturers do not have such sort of clearances yet, so the feature won’t work. With that being said, several telcos in India and smartphone manufacturers are actually trying to get permits for satellite connectivity in India.