In the latest Apple Watch and iPhone models, the Cupertino company has introduced a new function called “Fall Detection” which detects any accidents or falls that a user may have and can contact emergency services if necessary. In a nutshell, if the device detects a dangerous fall while you’re wearing your watch, it warns you with an acoustic alarm and if you don’t respond by blocking the alarm, it will call for help.
Fall Detection Function
But how does “Fall Detection” really work? If after a fall, Apple Watch detects that you are moving, it will play an audible signal and show you an alert on the watch screen where you will have the possibility to communicate if you are ok or if you want to contact the emergency services. At that point, the device waits for your response to the alert and does not automatically call 911. If, on the other hand, the device detects that you are still, after about a minute it will start a 30-second countdown during which it warns you with vibrations on the wrist and with acoustic signals. If you don’t want to call 911, you need to tap Cancel. Once the countdown is over, if there is no action on your part, Apple Watch will automatically call for help communicating your location. At the end of the call, the device will also send a message to your emergency contacts with your position, stating that it has detected an accidental fall and has alerted help. Apple Watch retrieves emergency contacts from the ones you’ve entered in the Health app’s medical records.
The same thing happens with iPhones that are enabled for the “Drop Detection” function, i.e. the iPhone 14. When they recognize the fall after one minute, they start a countdown and emit a beep. At the end of the countdown, the device will automatically call emergency services. Most users view “ Fall Detection ” as a handy feature – something that offers peace of mind but hopefully never has to use. In the last period, however, some users have complained that the function is not exactly accurate. People who were spending a day at a theme park did not realize that the “Fall Detection” function was activated while they were on the roller coaster. They didn’t hear that this had come into action and so the rescue machine was set in motion in a short time. Too bad these people then found themselves in the embarrassing situation of having to explain to the rescuers why they were called in vain. Hopefully, this was just an isolated incident and Apple is working on making this feature more and more accurate. In the meantime, however, to feel more secure you may want to disable this feature and in this article, we explain how to do it in both iPhone and Apple Watch.
Turn off Fall Detection on Apple Watch
If you want to disable Drop Detection on your Apple Watch Series 8, SE (2nd generation), or Ultra, open the Watch app on your paired iPhone and look at the bottom of the screen to make sure you’re on the My Watch tab. Then click “Emergency SOS” and in the Fall Detection section, tap the switch to turn it off. If you want to turn it back on, just touch it again and you will see it turn green. You can choose whether to keep it active all the time or activate it only during workouts. Once deactivated you will be asked to confirm your choice as it is a decision worth considering carefully.
Turn off Drop Detection on iPhone
If you want to disable Fall Detection on your iPhone 14, 14 Plus, 14 Pro, or 14 Pro Max (these are the only phones that currently support the feature), you need to log into the Settings app and go to the Emergency SOS feature. Within this tab, scroll down to the item Fall detection and here deactivate the switch next to the “Call after a fall” function.