The new iOS 11.3 is bringing Apple users a lot of new features – including Animoji, iCloud Messages, and even a new ARKit. Although these features are a lot of fun to play around with, they don’t have the potential life-saving capabilities of the new Advanced Mobile Location.
Advanced Mobile Location – also known as “AML” – automatically sends the user’s location when they the emergency services. AML activates GPS and Wi-Fi functionality when an emergency call is made, and also sends out a text with precise details of the caller’s location. This means that even though a person may not be able to talk on the phone, police, ambulance, or firefighting personnel can make their way directly to the person in question.
There are a huge number of scenarios in which this is useful and even life-saving, but currently, AML is only supported in the UK, Belgium, New Zealand, Sweden, Lithuania, and various parts of Austria. It is not yet supported in the US.
The AML feature is just one of the emergency-orientated features Apple has integrated into newer iOS builds. “Emergency SOS” – which brings up an easy-to-see, bright red and white call screen – is still a relatively new feature. As is “Medical ID,” which gives first-responders information about health conditions, issues, and problems if the person in question can’t tell them.
AML has been featured on all Android phones (which are running Gingerbread and higher) since mid-2016. Apple is essentially having to catch-up, but now that it has been released on the public beta programme, progress is being made.
If you’re a member of the beta-access programme, you can download the work-in-progress software here.