Apple brings the iPhone 14's satellite-powered SOS service to Europe

After launching the Emergency SOS via satellite service last month, it's now available for iPhone 14 users in France, Germany, Ireland and the UK.
Written by Stephanie Condon, Senior Writer
iPhone 14 and iPhone14 Plus next to each other.
Image: Jason Cipriani/ZDNET

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.

Also: How to use iPhone 14's emergency SOS satellite text feature

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.

Also: Apple just released updates for the iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and more

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.

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