When Apple originally unveiled the iPhone 14 series of models last year it used part of the announcement to go over one of the headlining features being added, which was Emergency SOS via satellite. This feature would allow the phones to connect to satellites to be able to send messages to emergency services, and update locations on Find My.
The feature was originally planned to be made free for two years following the launch of the device, later moving to a paid subscription. However, today Apple has announced that it will be extending its free access to the service for an additional year for existing iPhone 14 users. This applies to any iPhone 14 device that has been activated in a country that supports the feature prior to 12 a.m. PT today. Currently, 16 countries and regions support the service, the latest of which were Australia and New Zealand in May this year.
Kevin Drance, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide iPhone Product Marketing said that “Emergency SOS via satellite has helped save lives around the world. From a man who was rescued after his car plummeted over a 400-foot cliff in Los Angeles, to lost hikers found in the Apennine Mountains in Italy, we continue to hear stories of our customers being able to connect with emergency responders when they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to,” and that “we are so happy iPhone 14 and iPhone 15 users can take advantage of this groundbreaking service for two more years for free.”
Apple has also recently introduced the ability to make use of this feature to get Roadside Assistance in the U.S. which connects users to the American Automobile Association (AAA) if they have car trouble while outside of cellular and Wi-Fi coverage, further building on the satellite infrastructure originally introduced with the iPhone 14.