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Chicago iPhone users will soon automatically share location on 911 calls

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CHICAGO — Chicagoans who use iPhones to call 911 will soon be able to share their location information with first responders.

According to The Chicago Tribune, Apple is teaming up with RapidSOS, a New York-based emergency tech company, to integrate the ability to receive iPhone locations into call centers’ software.

RapidSOS will receive the location data from Apple, then pass the secure data to 911 centers receiving the call.

Apple users will need to download iOS 12, which is set to release in the fall, to use the new feature.

According to the city, three-fourths of 911 calls are made from cellphones. The new feature will allow the dispatchers to better locate Chicago callers who use their iPhones.

Several suburban jurisdictions, including Niles, Naperville, DuPage County and Cook County, will also be set up to use Apple’s new feature.

Brian Tegtmeyer, executive director of DuPage Public Safety Communications, tells the Chicago Tribune the new technology will be beneficial, especially in suburban areas.

“Having improved accuracy can make a big difference in those situations where a caller is not exactly sure where they are,” Tegtmeyer told the Tribune. “In the suburban area of Chicago especially, there are a lot of times where people cross a street and they change towns … they may not know where they’re calling from.”

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