Apple’s iPhone will speed up 911 location info for first responders

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As 9To5Mac reports, Apple partnered with RapidSOS to offer the company's Next Generation 911 technology as a standard feature of iOS 12.

The iOS 12 feature is aimed at providing faster and more accurate information to first-responders and cutting emergency response times.

Apple is trying to solve a potentially risky emergency response infrastructure problem.

Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said the new service is the "best available technology" and will "help first responders reach our customers when they most need assistance".

Apple today announced iOS 12 would have a new feature which enables US-based users to automatically share their location with emergency services when they call 911.

Apple this morning announced a new feature in iOS 12 which will automatically share your location with first responders when U.S. users dial 911 using their iPhone.

It states that "user data can not be used for any non-emergency goal and only the responding 911 center will have access to the user's location during an emergency call".

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"911 telecommunicators do extraordinary work managing millions of emergencies with little more than a voice connection".

Some centers already have the compatible software, according to Apple, but others will have to install upgrades to their existing software.

"This new functionality is an example of how companies and first responders can use technology to dramatically improve public safety", said Tom Wheeler, FCC Chairman from 2013 to 2017.

Under the new system, iPhones will send their exact location to a RapidSOS dispatcher, which will then forward the coordinates to local emergency response centers.

With RapidSOS support, Apple is apparently getting out ahead of a 2021 USA mandate in which the FCC will require carriers to locate callers to within 50 meters at least 80 percent of the time. iOS 12 will be able to exceed that level in the US, as iOS 11.3 does with AML.

By embracing this tech and making it a standard feature, Apple is actually complying with an FCC rule expected to come into force in 2021.

Only the 911 calling centers will be able to see the data during the call, and none of it can be used for non-emergency purposes, according to Apple.

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