One of the handy things about having an iPhone is its capacity to receive emergency alerts and notifying users of critical situations in their area or country. However, iPhone users need to make sure they have this feature turned in order to benefit from it.
To activate emergency alerts on the iPhone, navigate to Settings > Notifications > and then scroll down to Government Alerts. Here, you can also decide which kinds of alerts you want to receive. Phones running older operating systems may find these features at Settings > General > Government Alerts.
Let’s take a closer look at receiving emergency alerts on your iPhone so that you can get it setup as you like. We’ll also look at what to do if you’re not receiving alerts as expected.
How Do You Receive Emergency Alerts on Your iPhone?
Emergency alerts are, by default, turned on on your iPhone. You can double-check this by going to Settings > Notifications > then scrolling down to where it says Government Alerts.
There, you’ll see three options: AMBER Alerts, Emergency Alerts, and Public Safety Alerts. AMBER Alerts will notify you about kidnapped children in your area so you can keep an eye out, whereas the other two will tell you about anything that may present an imminent threat to your safety. You can choose which ones to turn on and off.
High-priority presidential alerts sent in times of national emergencies can’t be turned off; you will always receive them.
And note that, at time of writing, the location of this area has been given in terms of iOS16. Future operating systems may move the options somewhere else in the settings, and phones still running older software may still find these settings at their previous location: Settings > General > Government Alerts.
Why Don’t You Get Emergency Alerts on Your iPhone?
If you’re not receiving any emergency alerts, there are a few potential reasons, as follows:
Double-Check Your Settings
The first thing you should do if you’re not getting emergency alerts is double-check your settings. It’s easy to toggle things on and off by accident on a touchscreen, so make sure you have things set properly before you look at other solutions.
Restart Your Phone
It sounds simple, but restarting your phone can fix many different issues. If there are problems with your iPhone, turning it off and turning it back on can give the phone a soft reset and help it to work out some bugs.
Reset Airplane Mode
Another reason your phone may not be receiving emergency alerts is because of the network. A quick fix for this is to turn Airplane Mode off and on again in your settings, as that allows it to disconnect from the network and reconnect, potentially fixing any bugs.
Update Your iPhone
Every now and then, iPhone software encounters bugs and that’s often why Apple rolls out updates — to fix them. Many people put off updating their phone since it can take some time, but updates shouldn’t be ignored.
Go to Settings > General > About, and check for a software update. If there’s one available, make sure you install it right away.
Factory Reset Your iPhone
If none of the above methods have worked, then it’s time to head to Settings > General and reset your phone to its factory settings. Hopefully, this will fix all manner of bugs.
Before you do a reset, you should ensure you’ve backed up all data to iCloud or a computer, as this will wipe everything from your phone as well as reset all settings.
Visit a Repair Store or Apple Store
If things still aren’t working, you may have to visit a repair shop to diagnose and fix the problem. If you have an official Apple store or an Apple-certified shop in your area, it’s always a good idea to go there rather than to an unlicensed repair store.
Uncertified repair stores may void any warranty you have and if you do have that warranty — or, even better, AppleCare — then an official store should be able to diagnose and fix the phone for free, or provide you with a new one if they can’t.
It’s also important to remember that you won’t receive the same emergency alerts as someone in another area.
If your friend one state away is getting AMBER alerts that you aren’t, it may just be that there are more in their area — however, if there are alerts you should definitely receive that haven’t come through, you need to take a look and get it fixed.