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Apple’s Emergency SOS via satellite feature can be handy in certain situations where you don’t have a mobile network connection. Like iPhone’s Crash Detection feature, it can even be a useful tool to save lives.

It is important to note that Emergency SOS messaging is still limited to iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models. However, the feature is not offered on iPhones purchased in mainland China, Hong Kong, or Macao.

The feature requires iOS 16.1 update or later, but the requirement depends on location. For US and Canada-based users, iOS 16.1 update or later is needed. Meanwhile, iOS 16.2 or later is required in France, Germany, Ireland, and the UK, while iOS 16.4 or later is needed in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Portugal.

Moreover, certain conditions have to be met when using the feature in the said locations. For instance, Apple notes that it won’t work in places above 62° latitude, such as northern parts of Canada and Alaska.

Also, in order to completely work, a specific individual or group of people should already have access to your location (via the Find My app) before you step outside the cellular or Wi-Fi coverage. Once your device is functioning through this option, the location can be updated via satellite every 15 minutes.

Here are the steps you need to follow to do this:

  1. First, check your Find My app on your iPhone 14 you’re bringing with you outside the cellular or Wi-Fi coverage. Make sure it is the device you will use to share your location. 
  2. Also, check your Find My app and go to the ‘Me’ tab. Check if ‘Share My Location’ is on and ensure that the ‘Use This iPhone as My Location’ option is selected.
  3. Check the list of people you want to share your location with.
  4. Once everything is set up, try to find a place without connection coverage. For the satellite connection to work properly, it is a must to go to a spot with a clear view of the sky and the horizon. It won’t work under heavy foliage or when you are surrounded by other obstructions.
  5. After finding a clear spot to get a satellite connection, launch your Find My app and go to the ‘Me’ tab.
  6. Under the ‘My Location via Satellite’ option, select ‘Send My Location.’ A set of onscreen instructions will appear. Follow them. You might be asked to turn left or right to connect to a satellite, which might take minutes. Just follow the guidance you’ll receive until the message is sent.
  7. You can do this every 15 minutes. You can send your location via satellite, but you won’t be able to view your friend’s location in the Find My app.
  8. Recipients of this location info sent via satellite must have an iPhone (regardless of model) running iOS 16.1 or later. They will see a satellite icon on your picture and the ‘Satellite Location’ details. The most recent location detail you’ll send will be available for up to 7 days.


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