This feature has taken us a long time to confirm, readers - sorry about that. Testing it would have required us to call 9-1-1 for the sole purpose of testing out a neat new tool on a smartphone, and aside from being extremely illegal, none of us wanted to explain to a hard-working emergency dispatcher that we were using a vital service to write up a blog post. And on that note, please, please don't test out this feature on your own Android M preview build. Read More
In some emergency situations it might not be practical or possible to make a voice call to 911, but starting today, you might have another option. It took a bit of wrangling with wireless carriers, but the FCC's deadline for having the necessary wireless infrastructure in place is today. That doesn't mean everyone will be able to text 911 yet, but the pieces are in place. Read More
With all the cool, fun things our mobile devices can do—from looking up movie info, to games, to social networking, to being amazing cameras—we can sometimes forget that these devices can be valuable and necessary tools. This new app, First Aid - American Red Cross, reminds us to use our phones for important, potentially life-saving purposes, as well as for fun.
There's really no reason everyone shouldn't have this app installed. Read More
Back in December of 2011, the T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant was canned by the CyanogenMod team due to a 911 emergency dialing bug that was considered crucial and unfixable:
We are no longer supporting the Vibrant due to the inability to dial 911. We consider the issues related to this unresolvable without source code from Samsung related to the Radio interface layer and its interactions with the Audio layers and have taken the decision to no longer support this.
If you have a Samsung Vibrant running CyanongenMod, then you probably want to flash a a stock-based ROM double-quick. Why? Because you can't call 911 while running CM on this particular device. Sure, you may not remember the last time you had to call 911 (if ever), but can you imagine what would happen if you were in a situation where you needed to call 911 and couldn't?
For this exact reason, the CM team has decided to drop support for the Vibrant. Read More