Owners of the latest iPhones can now contact emergency services when there is no phone signal or Wi-Fi.
The feature uses satellites to send a message to Apple experts who then contact the appropriate authorities.
The same technology also means users can use the existing Find My app to let loved ones know where they are in dead spots.
brand new iPhone There are now 14 models with these features, with people in the UK, Ireland, France and Germany first to benefit. More countries will follow next year.
The “game-changing” satellite connectivity is made possible thanks to “custom-designed components and deeply integrated software,” Apple said.
John Anthony, chairman of the British Association of Public Safety Communications Officers, said the feature would “help save lives”.
iPhone users can already get emergency help by long-pressing the power or volume buttons, or by quickly pressing the power button five times.
Other devices, like the Google Pixel, have similar emergency features and shortcuts, but satellite functionality usually requires a dedicated phone.
How does it work?
The satellite feature kicks in when someone tries to call 999 but can’t get a signal. The screen will then prompt them to answer a few short questions about the situation.
They are told where to point their phone to connect to the satellite and all the details are sent to an Apple specialist who then contacts the emergency services call centre.
Apple says messages can be sent in as little as 15 seconds in clear weather conditions.
A demo version of the feature is available so people can test it without actually asking for help.
The iPhone 14 also has collision detection, which can sense when someone is likely to be in a traffic accident and call emergency personnel — a feature shared with some other phones.
However, some users reported in October that it was Triggered when they ride a roller coaster.