In a whopping $450 million cash injection, Apple has announced it will invest in its satellite network and ground stations to power emergency SOS messaging.
The emergency SOS investment will boost its service for the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro that cater for the satellite emergency calls feature..
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A huge chunk of the investment will go towards Globalstar, the satellite provider which Apple has an existing partnership with to deliver emergency SOS when Apple launches the feature this month.
This will mean new custom-designed antennas manufactured by California-based company Cobham Satcom, designed to receive signals.
About 300 Globalstar employees will work on the service.
Emergency SOS will not support ordinary data, voice or texts, but will introduce alerts with a location and other key information when in a crises.
Users will simply point their devices at a satellite using an orientation guide in iOS where they can choose between preset messages sent along with the phone’s battery information as well as medical information to local emergency services.
Apple plans to introduce the feature at no cost for about two years after it goes live in the United States including Canada.
The investment will span over a five year period.
Apple Inc launched the iPhone 14 at its launch themed Far Out in California in September this year.
Emergency SOS via satellite enables users to communicate via text with emergency services and share their location via satellite using the Find My app feature.
Apples iPhone 14 range is equipped with software that will show users where to point their phones in order to link up to a satellite when no other service options are available.
Once connected the satellite feature allows users to have access to emergency services, a feature which according to Apple will take about 15 seconds to send if users have a clear view of the sky.
The feature can also be used to communicate in non-emergency situations such as when a user is out for a long hike and wants to keep their family members updated on their whereabouts.
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