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Apple is working on similar functions to OnStar calling the police in a car accident

Apple is working on similar functions to OnStar calling the police in a car accident

Apple is working on similar functions to OnStar calling the police in a car accident

It looks like Apple is working on a new iPhone and Apple Watch feature that detects if you’re in a car accident and automatically dials 911. The current plan is to launch such a feature next year, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Google Personal Safety app on Pixel phones already includes a feature to call for help when it detects car accidents, as do connected car services in modern vehicles, including GM’s OnStar, Subaru’s Starlink and Fiat Chrysler’s Uconnect. Many cars running today are not equipped with any connectivity features, so getting an accident detection on an iPhone also means that more drivers can get the help they need in the event of an accident, as long as they have one in their pocket or mounted on board.

Increased use of smartphones in cars has given way to integration systems such as CarPlay and Android Auto, the first to appear in nearly 80% of new vehicles by 2020, according to Apple. Creating a new iPhone crash feature with CarPlay could strengthen Apple’s “IronHeart” project of connecting its phone to the car’s settings, in the same way that HomeKit controls smart speakers and lighting. Targeting the $ 2 billion annual revenue stream that GM brings to OnStar with built-in features would be a very Apple thing to do.

Although Apple’s crash detection has not always worked as planned in the past, the company has had many years to collect data and analysis on eager iOS and watchOS users. It remains to be seen how accurately Apple will be able to detect car accidents, not to mention people falling. Speaking from personal experience, in February 2020 I jumped out of a scooter wearing an Apple Watch Series 4, and the device was ready to call the emergency services until I pressed the “I’m OK” button. But after a more recent trip and fall incident, the Apple Watch Series 7 offered no assistance.