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The UK is testing emergency alerts on iPhones next week

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What you need to know

  • The UK is going to test emergency alerts for iPhone users next week.
  • This will be the first time the UK has had such a system in place.

The UK is going to run an emergency alert test for iPhone users on June 29. The move was confirmed by the page on the gov.uk website. However, the test will only be carried out in Reading, Berkshire so anyone living elsewhere shouldn't expect anything this time around.

9to5Mac was the first to spy the tests which begin today for a limited number of Android users. Users will receive a test between 13:00 and 14:00 with the following test set to be displayed.

This is a mobile network operator test of the Emergency Alerts service. You do not need to take any action. To find out more, search for gov.uk/alerts

Once the testing is over and the emergency alerts system is live, the UK says people with phones and tablets can expect to receive the notifications in a limited number of instances including:

  • severe flooding
  • fires
  • explosions
  • terrorist incidents
  • public health emergencies

This is all similar to the AMBER alerts that are already in use across the United States, for example.

Anyone keen to learn more about the tests or future alerts can check out the gov.uk/alerts website for more information, including how the system works. Note – your phone number is not used to send these alerts which is why tablets will also receive them. It isn't clear yet whether, like AMBER alerts, users will be able to opt out of receiving these new emergency alerts.

Speaking of alerts, it's time to alert you to the ongoing Amazon Prime Day sale. With just a few hours left to save some money. what are you waiting for?

Oliver Haslam
Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.