Apple’s latest iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are getting more attention than the regular iPhone 14 models. That is because the Pro models are loaded with new features. But one new and important feature that will be available on all four iPhone models is the new Emergency SOS via Satellite. It is essentially a new satellite connectivity feature that will help you connect with local authorities in case of an emergency in an area without cellular signal coverage. But it won’t be available for free.
During the keynote at the Far Out event, Apple talked about Emergency SOS via Satellite and how it works. But it also gave out an important piece of information about the feature. Emergency SOS via Satellite will be a paid feature. That’s right. After an introductory offer, you will have to pay Apple to use the brand new satellite feature. You will get two years of free service with a brand-new iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro series model. After that, there will be a fee, which is not clear right now.
Why is Apple charging for the satellite service?
Apple said the satellite connectivity feature would let an iPhone 14 user connect to a responding satellite and use that connection to send an SOS call or text. Apple does not own a satellite, so it is using the services of global satellite service provider Globalstar.
Founded in 2001, Globalstar operates a constellation of 24 satellites in Earth’s low orbit to provide services to satellite-equipped cell phones. Apple iPhone 14 is equipped with Globalstar’s satellite services that connect the device to satellites and allow users to send messages to 911 in the US and Canada. Apple is likely paying Globalstar to use its satellite services.
Moreover, when a user sends an emergency SOS using satellite communication, a dedicated call centre makes emergency calls for them. Essentially, Apple has hired people to relay calls between the user and 911 services. Because of these factors, it is likely Apple will make the Emergency SOS via Satellite service chargeable.