Apple on Tuesday expanded its new emergency service, Emergency SOS via satellite, to customers in France, Germany, Ireland and the UK. Now, iPhone 14 users in those countries will be able to get in touch with emergency services, even if they're outside of cellular and wi-fi range. Apple will expand the service into more countries next year.
The iPhone maker launched the feature last month in the US and Canada after unveiling it during its Far Out event in September. The feature is available on any iPhone 14 device running iOS 16.1 or later. It's free for two years starting at the time of activation of a new phone.
The feature uses custom-designed components and software to connect to a satellite's unique frequencies without a bulky antenna. Users can send and receive messages in as little as 15 seconds in clear conditions. There's a demo built into the feature, so that users can try it out before they're in an actual emergency.
With the new feature, users can also use the Find My app to share their location with friends and loved ones via satellite.
Last month, before launching the new emergency feature, Apple said it was spending $450 million in US infrastructure to support the service.