Satellite SOS features might be appearing on Google Pixel phones

  • A “Satellite SOS” option has actually started popping up in the Safety & emergency section of the settings on Google Pixel phones.
  • With Pixel’s satellite SOS feature, users can message with emergency services and share their location when they can’t connect to a mobile or Wi-Fi network.

Google could be set to launch satellite SOS features on its Pixel phones, following Apple’s lead with the iPhone 14 in 2022. The feature allows users to send emergency messages and share their location even without an active cellular or Wi-Fi connection, potentially saving lives in critical situations.

Google’s preparations to add satellite connectivity

Recently, a “Satellite SOS” option has been spotted in the Safety & emergency settings section of Pixel phones, hinting at Google’s preparations to add satellite connectivity to its devices. While tapping on the option currently doesn’t trigger any action, it indicates that Google is laying the groundwork for this significant feature.

9to5Google’s deeper investigation revealed references to Garmin, a company speculated to be assisting Google in implementing satellite connectivity on Pixel phones. The code suggests that Pixel users will be able to communicate with emergency services and relay their location when traditional networks are unavailable.

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Hardware requirements for satellite connectivity

While this development is exciting for Pixel enthusiasts, it raises questions about the hardware requirements for satellite connectivity. It’s essential to have specialized chipsets and antennas to support this feature, which may mean that current Pixel models lack the necessary components. As such, consumers might have to wait for future iterations like the Google Pixel 9 to experience full satellite SOS capabilities.

The potential introduction of satellite SOS features on Pixel phones not only enhances user safety but also showcases Google’s commitment to innovation in the smartphone industry. By collaborating with companies like Garmin, Google aims to provide a comprehensive emergency communication solution that sets its devices apart in the competitive market.

Also read: Database leak exposes 2FA codes of global tech giants like Google

The influence to the Android ecosystem

This move also prompts speculation about the broader implications for the Android ecosystem. While Pixel phones are leading the charge, it’s plausible that other Android manufacturers, such as Samsung, could follow suit. The absence of satellite SOS on recent Galaxy devices leaves room for anticipation regarding future implementations and advancements in Android emergency services.

Google’s exploration of satellite SOS functionality signifies a progressive step towards ensuring user security and expanding the capabilities of mobile devices beyond conventional limitations. As technology continues to evolve, integrating satellite connectivity into smartphones heralds a new era of emergency communication that prioritizes user well-being in unforeseen circumstances.


Cherry Qiu

Cherry Qiu was an intern reporter at BTW media covering AI. She majored in journalism and has various working experiences.

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