Emergency SOS via Satellite feature on iPhone 14 saves man in Alaska

With the release of iOS 16.1 last month, Apple introduced the Emergency SOS via Satellite feature, enabling iPhone 14 users to use satellite connectivity to access emergency services when no cellular or WiFi connection is available. And it has already saved a man in Alaska who was stranded in a rural area today.

The man was traveling by snow machine on December 1 from Noorvik to Kotzebue. He was in a cold, remote location with no connectivity nearby when he activated the Emergency SOS via Satellite feature on his iPhone 14, which alerted the Alaska State Troopers. 

Apple’s Emergency Response Center collaborated with local search and rescue teams and the Northwest Arctic Borough Search and Rescue Coordinator to direct searchers to GPS coordinates relayed to Apple via the emergency function.

The man was unharmed and rescued successfully. However, the area where he got lost was remote and beyond the latitude (69°) of where Apple said satellite connectivity works (62°).

Troopers who helped with the rescue were impressed by how accurate and complete the initial alert was with the Emergency SOS via Satellite feature, which is designed to ask several questions before sending out an alert to speed up rescue missions.

Emergency SOS via satellite is a new feature that is exclusive to the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models. The feature, which launched in the United States and Canada back in November, will be available to iPhone 14 owners for free for the first two years.

On the same day that the new feature came out, Apple announced that Emergency SOS via satellite will soon be available in four more countries.

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