Apple's New Emergency SOS Service: How It Works

Apple has introduced a new emergency SOS service to help improve the safety of its iPhone users. In this post, we will take you through how this service works. We will also touch a little on how you can connect your iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro model to a satellite in case you find yourself in a place with no cellular or Wi-Fi coverage.
Apple's New Emergency SOS Service: How It Works
Apple's New Emergency SOS Service: How It Works

The emergency SOS service allows you to quickly and effortlessly call for help as well as alert your emergency contacts. Well, here is how this new service works:

When you use the SOS emergency service to make a call, your iPhone calls the local emergency number automatically. It is worth noting that in some regions and countries, you might have to select the service you need. A good example of these countries is China mainland where you can choose ambulance, fire, or police, depending on the type of help you need.

The emergency SOS service also makes adding emergency contacts possible. Once your emergency call is complete, your device will alert the emergency contacts on it via a text message. Of course, you can opt to cancel the call altogether. After alerting your emergency contacts, your iPhone ensures your current location is known. When your location changes, your emergency contacts will receive updates for some time after you enter SOS mode.

Furthermore, you can use the new emergency SOS service via satellite to seek help from local emergency services if you have iPhone 14. This feature is really handy if you find yourself in a place with no Wi-Fi coverage or cellular network.

How the New Emergency SOS Service Works on iPhone 8 or Later

To use the emergency SOS service on iPhone 8 or later, simply consider doing the following:

Start by pressing and holding the side button as well as one of the volume buttons. Keep doing this until the Emergency SOS slider emerges. Next, call emergency services by dragging the Emergency Call slider. If instead of dragging the slider, you keep holding down the volume and side buttons, a countdown will start followed by an alert. Your iPhone will call emergency services automatically if you keep holding down its buttons until the countdown ends.

How the New Emergency SOS Service Works on iPhone 7 or the Earlier Models

If you have iPhone 7 model or earlier versions, then you will have to do things a bit differently than someone with iPhone 8 or later. That being said, you will need to do the following to activate the new emergency SOS service:

Start by pressing the top or side button rapidly. Do this five times. After rapidly pressing the button the recommended number of times, the Emergency Call slider will appear. Once you have spotted it, drag it to call emergency services. You should note that in India, you only need to press the button three times. Once you have done that, your iPhone will call emergency services automatically.

After the call has ended, your device will send a text message to your emergency contacts. And, in the text message, your cellular device will include your current location. If by chance, the Location Services is off, your device will turn it on temporarily. And, in case your location changes, your iPhone will send an update to your emergency contacts. And around 10 minutes later, you will get a notification. iPhone 7 or earlier also allows you to cancel the emergency SOS service in case you activated it by accident. That brings us to the next section of this article, which talks about ending an emergency call.

Ending an Emergency Call on iPhone

For some reason, you might accidentally start the countdown. Fortunately, this is not the end of the world. If you are using iPhone 8 or later, all you need to do to end the call is simply release the volume and side buttons. And, if it is iPhone 7 or earlier, simply press the ‘Stop’ button and then proceed to the next step, which is to tap the Stop Calling feature. If you call emergency services by accident, you can still end the call. And it is simple; all you need to do is tap the End Call button before confirming that you wish to stop calling.

How Emergency SOS Service Via Satellite Works

As mentioned earlier, if you have iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro with iOS 16.1 or later, then you can use emergency SOS service via satellite. You must also note that you have to be in a place where there is no cellular or Wi-Fi coverage for emergency SOS via satellite to work. Well, consider these steps to use emergency SOS via satellite.

• Step 1: Hold your phone naturally in your hand. You do not need to hold it up or raise your arm.

• Step 2: Ensure you are outside and in a place with a clear view of the sky and the horizon

• Step 3: Avoid trees with light foliage since they can slow down the connection. Additionally, trees with dense foliage can block the connection.

• Step 4: Always know that your iPhone offers guidance in case you want to move right or left or just looking to avoid a blocked signal.

• Step 5: You should note that the satellite connection remains maintained even if the screen of your phone is locked.


Using Apple’s new emergency SOS service is relatively easy regardless of your iPhone model. All you need to do is follow the steps and tips listed above. Furthermore, you can use emergency SOS service via satellite if you have iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro.

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