Google adds SOS alert capabilities to Search and Maps

Geronimo Vena
Luglio 25, 2017

Google has added a new SOS alerts feature to its Google Search and Maps applications to provide live updates about incidents occurring.

It sounds as though Google could be planning to cover attacks as well, as its help site says that alerts may appear for a "human-caused crisis".

In times of crisis, access to timely, actionable information is crucial. You'll see maps, top stories and - when available - authoritative local information such as emergency phone numbers, websites, and translations of useful phrases.

For those located far from the crisis, searching for it or for that location will bring up more information and links, such as donation opportunities, at the top of the search results. But Google says that in some cases, it may send out push alerts to people in a disaster area directing them to this information, too. This SOS Alerts feature will be applied across Search and Maps for both the web and mobile, including the mobile web as well as for mobile apps.

Google Maps on mobile can also show SOS Alerts. Google's offering has been developed with the help of the Red Cross, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, and more. Real-time updates like road closures, traffic and public transport updates will also be shown on the map.

"Radio and television were once the only channels to quick provide information in an emergency, but the internet and mobile phones have become increasingly important."
Working alongside trained responders and volunteers on the ground, technology plays a vital role in providing information to help keep you and loved ones safe and informed. Regardless of your reason, Google has launched a new feature for its Maps and Search services in the form of SOS Alerts.

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