Financial Times, Apple is the largest company in the world. They’re not some nebulous conglomerate like Berkshire Hathaway, the fourth largest company. Everyone knows what Apple makes, even those who don't use their products. Given Apple's size, when they release a product that provides functions A, B, and C, and you want a function D, it would seem unlikely you could get your idea implemented. Hold that thought.
As I wrote about in a previous post, I purchased an Apple Watch so I could, among other things, call for emergency help using voice only, if I found myself in a position where I couldn’t reach my iPhone. I was disappointed when I conducted a test 911 call, and the Apple Watch informed me that this function was only supported by the iPhone.
I contacted Apple, and they helped me come up with a workaround so that I could call 911 by pushing a couple of buttons on my watch. This was better than nothing, but I still wanted true hands-free, 911 calling. Already, I have limited use of my hands because of advanced multiple sclerosis, and I don’t want to rely on them in an emergency. The person I spoke to at Apple, a senior advisor named Melanie, said that the Apple software engineers liked my idea of providing hands-free 911 calls on the Apple Watch. She asked me to fill out a customer feedback form to initiate that software upgrade. I did as asked, and I waited for the next software revision. Would I be heard?
Last week, I updated my Apple Watch software to OS 2. Afterward, I called the local police nonemergency number and set up a test call to the 911 dispatcher. I said, “Hey Siri, call 911.”
A few seconds later…
“This is 911. What is the address of your emergency?”
“This is Mitchell Sturgeon making my test call.”
“I can hear you loud and clear, Mr. Sturgeon. Have a nice day.”
“Thanks. You have a nice day as well.”
Not only did the 911 dispatcher hear me loud and clear, but so did the largest company in the world, and I am safer today because of it. Thanks, Apple.