Apple revealed that its new handsets have sensors and technology that can recognize whether a user has been in a traffic accident with the release of the iPhone 14 series. After that, if the user doesn’t respond to the iPhone’s request to summon emergency services, emergency services will call themselves.
Joanna Stern of The Wall Street Journal worked in Michigan with a demolition derby driver to see if they could get the new iPhone to activate the safety feature.
The derby car was equipped with an iPhone 14, a Google Pixel, and an Apple Watch Ultra on the driver’s wrist. A Pixel 6 and an iPhone 14 Pro Max were placed inside a stationary junk vehicle that was about to be crashed. In order to determine which devices activated Crash detection, a professional derby driver was required to drive a derby vehicle into a parked car.
The Wall Street Journal contacted Apple for a response following the vehicle crashes and the inconsistent performance of iPhones and Pixels.
When I contacted Apple with the results, a company spokesman said that the testing conditions in the junkyard didn’t provide enough signals to the iPhone to trigger the feature in the stopped cars.
It must first be determined that the gadget is inside a moving vehicle for Crash Detection to function. According to WSJ, an algorithm considers a number of factors in order for the feature to function. Motion sensors can detect sudden changes in motion, microphones can pick up loud noises like the impact of a collision, a barometer can pick up changes in air pressure when an airbag is deployed, GPS readings can pick up sudden decelerations in motion (or even that the device is in motion at all), and CarPlay and Bluetooth status can better indicate whether the device is actually in motion.
Not all sorts of crashes can be detected by crash detection features in Google or Apple. On new iPhones, a disclaimer stating exactly that is located immediately under the Crash Detection setting. All the same, the devices must be able to recognize that they are within a moving vehicle by using some or all of the aforementioned signals.
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