iOS 18 Gains Emergency SOS Live Video Support

iOS 18 is giving iPhone users who find themselves in an emergency situation a way to provide more information and context to emergency responders with an update to Emergency SOS.

emergency sos
Emergency SOS now supports live video, which means once the SOS feature is activated, streaming video and recorded media can be sent to emergency personnel. Emergency dispatchers can send a request for a user to share either live video or a video from the camera roll, which Apple says should make it easier and faster to get help.

Video is sent over a secure connection to the emergency dispatcher. The option could allow those in emergency situations to send key information for location purposes, to assess injury or risk, or to be used as evidence at a later date.

Emergency SOS is a feature on the ‌iPhone‌ and Apple Watch that automatically calls the local emergency number and shares location information with emergency services. It is the backbone of the Crash Detection, Fall Detection, and Emergency SOS via satellite features.

Related Roundups: iOS 18, iPadOS 18
Related Forums: iOS 18, iPadOS 18

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Top Rated Comments

steve09090 Avatar
4 weeks ago
I like the slow, deliberate roll out for this, to try and ensure it doesn’t overload and seize the system. It will continually get better in stages. I approve.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Apple_Robert Avatar
4 weeks ago
I like this idea and hope I never need to use such a feature.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
@Brett Avatar
4 weeks ago
Apple constantly adding potentially life saving features. Hope not to use them. But this can only be a good thing. We do not need to overwhelm emergencies services with things that don’t work properly.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
xmach Avatar
4 weeks ago

Wait, you'll be able to send video but RCS over SOS Sat is still too bloated to work over it?
You're confusing two very different scenarios.

Apple has said that RCS is too inefficient for general-use texting (maybe thousands or hundreds of thousands of messages a day, maybe even more?). This is not incompatible with allowing video for the much more limited and rare emergency/SOS scenarios (probably no more than a handful or a few dozen SOS calls/day?).

Apple's implementation so far is entirely logical and reasonable.

Perhaps, in the future, as the capacity of Globalstar's satellite network continues to increase, Apple will eventually enable video for general use. For now though, capacity is limited, and it makes sense to limit video to only emergency use.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bluegt Avatar
4 weeks ago

Apple constantly adding potentially life saving features. Hope not to use them. But this can only be a good thing. We do not need to overwhelm emergencies services with things that don’t work properly.
It’s in their interest to ensure their customers live :D
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NightFox Avatar
4 weeks ago

Wondering if it shows the mic and camera light at the top of the screen? Otherwise big brother may be watching. :rolleyes:
IF you really do think that Apple would build some sort of surveillance capability into the iPhone, why do you think they would need to ‘sneak it in’ along with another function like this? They could bake it in the the OS anytime. And I’d like to think they’d have the foresight and technological competence to make sure the privacy warning indicators didn’t come on when ‘big brother was watching’.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)