If it lives up to Apple's promise, the iPhone's next operating system will automatically deliver quicker and more reliable information pinpointing the location of 911 calls to about 6,300 emergency response centers in the U.S.
Apple stressed out that approximately 80 percent of emergency calls in the United States are now made from a mobile devices, however "outdated" framework has made it quite hard for 911 respond teams to quickly acquire a caller's location.
Apple's announcement adds to a growing trend of making location recognition from mobile phones easier for both individuals and those responding to 911 calls. RapidSOS support for iPhone will arrive alongside iOS 12 when the new software update drops this fall.
What Apple and RapidSOS are doing is essentially providing the aging service with a crutch so that it can continue doing its job. The new system will certainly come in incredibly handy in emergency situations, and here's to hoping Apple will eventually be able to bring it to other countries. Though 80% of emergency calls come from mobile phones, according to Apple, landline-based infrastructure can make it hard for 911 centers to quickly identify a caller's location. The company's Hybridized Emergency Location system (called HELO) launched in 2015 and uses cell towers and data from the phone, such as GPS and Wi-Fi access points, to location users. Furthermore, this feature can not be accessed for non-emergency calls. While some of these mobile devices do not have geo-location detection features, majority do, and in the U.S., a large chunk of them run Apple's iOS.More news: Judge sends President's aide to jail
911 telecommunicators do extraordinary work managing millions of emergencies with little more than a voice connection.
Apple says it will not provide the name of the caller and will only share the location information in an emergency, for privacy reasons. "Lives will be saved thanks to this effort by Apple and RapidSOS", said Tom Wheeler, FCC Chairman from 2013 to 2017 in a statement.