How to set up SOS Emergency Calling and Emergency Contacts in iOS

The iPhone is not only an incredible smartphone, but also a potential life-saver. Let’s say you’ve ever been in a situation where you needed immediate help. In that case, your iOS device allows you to take advantage of a feature called Emergency SOS to quickly call emergency services. It’s always enabled by design, so you don’t need to activate anything to start using it.

However, you can reconfigure Emergency SOS and modify how it defaults to working on your iPhone, you can even add emergency contacts and medical details to prepare in case. emergency.

So, below, you will find out what you have to do to set up and use Emergency SOS on your iPhone. You’ll also learn how to set up your emergency contacts and medical ID on your iPhone.

How Emergency SOS works

Emergency SOS is an enhanced safety feature that allows you to contact local emergency services using physical buttons on your iPhone. It’s faster than manually dialing, and it’s also useful if you’re in a life-threatening situation that keeps you from moving around. If you use an Apple Watch, it’s also indispensable with Drop Detection.

In addition to connecting you to an emergency operator, Emergency SOS transmits your location and shares your Medical ID (US only if you’ve taken the time to set it up) with emergency services .

Furthermore, emergency contacts also receive a text message indicating that you have contacted emergency services, along with ongoing updates if your location changes.

How to use Emergency SOS

Depending on your iPhone model, you can call and use Emergency SOS using a combination of the Side and Volume Up or Volume Down buttons, or the Side button alone.

iPhone 8 Series, iPhone X and newer

Press and hold both Edge and Volume up or Turn down the volume simultaneous. When you see Emergency SOS sliders on the screen, release the buttons and drag SOS icon on the right to initiate a call to emergency services.

A visual guide on how to use Emergency SOS

Alternatively, you can use the Auto Call function of Emergency SOS to call emergency services without interacting with the screen. Again, press and hold both Edge and Volume up or Turn down the volume at the same time, but keep the buttons pressed even after the Emergency SOS slider appears.

Then the SOS icon will start moving to the right by itself, followed by a countdown timer and an alert sound. When the countdown reaches zero, your iPhone will automatically dial emergency services. However, you may still have to specify the emergency service you want to contact in some countries and regions.


An exception is if you live in India. Just triple click Edge and your iOS device will automatically call emergency services.

iPhone 7 Series, iPhone 6 Series and earlier

Click Edge or Top short press five times to display the emergency SOS screen. Follow it by dragging SOS icon on the right to initiate a call to emergency services. If you want your device to automatically call emergency services, you must enable Auto Call via Emergency SOS settings (more information will be available later).

However, pressing Edge triple button will prompt your iPhone to make an automatic call to emergency services if you live in India.

How to use the side button to call emergency SOS

If you have an iPhone 8 or later, pressing the Side button and the Volume button together to activate Emergency SOS can be inconvenient (or even impossible). In that case, you can reconfigure your iOS device to enable the feature simply by using the Side button.

To do that, open your iPhone Setting app and tap Emergency SOS Category. Then, on the next screen, turn on the switch next to it Call by side button.

Emergency SOS > Side Button Call ” class=”wp-image-13643″  /></figure>
<p>You can then initiate the emergency SOS by briefly pressing <strong>Edge </strong>button five times.  Unfortunately, that will also appear in the emergency countdown timer.  To cancel it, tap <strong>Stop </strong>and confirm by touching <strong>Stop calling</strong>.</p>
<h2><span class=How to disable or enable automatic calling in Emergency SOS

On iPhone 8 and later, you can use Emergency SOS to contact emergency services without interacting with the screen because of the built-in Auto Call function. However, despite its importance, you can also end the call by accident.

If that’s the problem, you can choose to disable Auto Call. To do that, visit Setting > Emergency SOS and turn off the side switch Automatic call.

Automatic Call conversion turned off

Now, whenever you initiate emergency SOS, you must always pull SOS icon on the right to make a call to emergency services.

If you have an iPhone 7 or an earlier model, it won’t automatically call emergency services unless you go to the same screen and turn on the switch next to Automatic call.

How to turn off the countdown sound in Emergency SOS

Before your iPhone makes an automatic call to emergency services, you’ll start hearing a loud alert sound. That helps you to cancel it if you accidentally activate the Emergency SOS. But in the event of a real emergency, it also alerts anyone nearby to help you.

However, you can choose to turn off the countdown sound, which is ideal if you want to contact emergency services without notifying others. Start by opening Setting application. Then tap Emergency SOS catalog and turn off the side switch Countdown sound. You won’t see this option if Auto Call is turned off.

Turn off the countdown sound

How to set up emergency contacts in Emergency SOS

If you find yourself in a situation that requires you to call emergency services, you can configure your iPhone to notify specific people by adding them as an emergency contact.

To do that, visit Setting > Emergency SOS and press Setting Up Emergency Contacts. Then tap Edit at the top right of the screen.

Scroll down Urgent contact and use add emergency contact option to select a contact from the Contacts application. You must then define your relationship with the contact. Repeat by adding any other people you want to add as an emergency contact.

A visual guide to setting up contacts in Emergency SOS

These contacts will then receive a text message whenever you contact emergency services. Additionally, your iPhone should also use location services to forward your location and continue to update them if that changes.

How to set your Medical ID on iPhone

Emergency contacts are part of your Medical ID, so it’s best to follow that by adding your medical details, such as any medical conditions you may have. , your current medication, your blood type, etc. You can also turn on the side switch Displayed when locked to allow emergency responders to access your Medical ID from your iPhone’s Lock Screen.

Displayed when locked is on

Alternatively, you can fill in your Medical ID directly using the iPhone’s Health app. For complete step-by-step instructions, check out this guide to setting up your health profile on iPhone.

Emergency SOS: Hopefully You’ll Never Use It

Knowing that you have emergency SOS at your fingertips can make a huge difference when it’s time to contact emergency services with your iPhone quickly. So it’s essential to take the time to learn how the function works and set it up in a way that works best for you. Adding emergency contacts and filling in your Medical ID can also be of great help to loved ones and emergency responders dealing with emergencies effectively.

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