Apple last year introduced Emergency SOS via Satellite with the iPhone 14 lineup, allowing users to call emergency services for help in places where there’s no cellular or Wi-Fi connectivity. Since then, other smartphone makers have been working with Google to bring a similar feature to Android – and Samsung has just confirmed that it will be adding satellite-based capabilities to the Galaxy S24.
Samsung Galaxy S24 to get satellite-based features
Earlier this year, the South Korean company had already announced its plans to bring satellite connectivity to smartphones. However, Samsung executive Park Yong (via SamMobile) confirmed this week that the company will begin offering satellite connectivity for emergency services on its flagship phones starting in early 2024.
Although the details are unclear, it’s no surprise that Yong is referring to the Galaxy S24, as Samsung typically announces its new high-end smartphones in January or February.
However, Samsung’s strategy for getting this feature into the hands of users remains to be seen. Apple, for example, has added satellite capabilities to every iPhone 14 and iPhone 15 model. Samsung could do the same for the entire S24 family or keep satellite connectivity exclusive to the more expensive Galaxy S24 Ultra.
On the iPhone, the Emergency SOS via Satellite feature asks the user a few questions about the situation and sends the answers along with the current location to a relay center. Specialists then call emergency services on the user’s behalf.
While the feature on Samsung’s phones should work in a similar way, the company has been exploring the possibility of sending and receiving any kind of messages via satellite. This would allow users to send text messages to anyone else, not just emergency services, when there’s no cellular connection available.
Emergency SOS via satellite
Since it was launched on the iPhone, Emergency SOS via Satellite has helped a lot of people to be rescued from dangerous situations. In August, a family was rescued from the fires in Maui thanks to the feature. In June, a hiker with a broken leg was rescued by a helicopter after using the satellite connectivity on her iPhone to call for help.
Apple’s Emergency SOS via Satellite is currently available in the US, Canada, the UK, France, Germany, Ireland, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Portugal. Although the feature was released for free last year, Apple said it would be a limited-time offer for two years.
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