How to Silently Call Emergency Services on iPhone: A Step-by-Step Guide

Calling emergency services silently on an iPhone is a feature designed for situations where you might be unable to speak or it’s unsafe to make noise. To do this, quickly press the side button five times, drag the Emergency SOS slider to call emergency services, or keep holding the side button and volume button to initiate a countdown, after which your iPhone will automatically call for help.

After completing the action, your iPhone will connect you to emergency services. Your location information will also be sent if you have the “Share My Location” feature enabled in the settings. This feature could be vital in critical situations where discretion is required.


In today’s world, the importance of quick and discreet access to help in an emergency cannot be overstated. Whether due to a medical emergency, a security issue, or a dangerous situation, being able to silently call for assistance is a crucial feature that iPhone offers to its users. This capability is particularly important for anyone who may find themselves in a situation where they cannot speak or need to make an emergency call without drawing attention to themselves. It’s a feature that could literally be a lifesaver.

The silent emergency call feature on iPhones is designed with various scenarios in mind, including situations where one might be hiding from an intruder or experiencing a health issue that leaves them unable to communicate verbally. It’s not just for risky scenarios; it’s for anyone who feels the need for an extra layer of safety and assurance. Understanding how to use this feature could be key in getting you or your loved ones the help they need quickly and quietly.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Silently Call Emergency Services on iPhone

Before delving into the steps, it’s essential to understand that the following instructions will help you set up your iPhone to make a silent emergency call. This feature ensures that you can connect with emergency services discreetly and quickly when every second counts.

Step 1: Press the side button five times quickly

Pressing the side (or top, depending on your iPhone model) button five times in rapid succession activates the Emergency SOS feature.

This step is designed to be straightforward and easily performed, even in stressful situations. The rapid clicking motion is something that can be done without looking, making it accessible in the dark or when visibility is an issue.

Step 2: Drag the Emergency SOS slider

On your iPhone screen, you will see an Emergency SOS slider. Dragging this slider will initiate the call to emergency services.

Dragging the slider is a gesture that confirms your intention to make an emergency call, preventing accidental calls if the side button is pressed unintentionally.

Step 3: Continue holding the side and volume button

If you continue holding the side and volume button instead of dragging the slider, your iPhone will begin a countdown and then automatically call emergency services.

This step is particularly useful if you’re unable to look at your screen or need your hands free while waiting for help to arrive. The countdown provides a short window to cancel the call if activated accidentally.


Quick AccessEasy and fast access to emergency services can be the difference between life and death in critical situations.
Discreet CallingIt allows individuals to call for help without alerting a potential threat. This feature maintains your safety while getting help on the way.
Auto Call and Location SharingAuto-calling with location information can provide emergency services with your location, even if you’re unable to speak or don’t know where you are.


Accidental ActivationThere’s a possibility of accidentally activating the emergency call feature, especially if the side button is pressed unintentionally.
Battery DrainageKeeping location services on for the feature to work effectively can drain your battery faster.
Potential for False AlarmsMisuse or misunderstanding of how the feature works can lead to false alarms, which can tie up emergency services unnecessarily.

Additional Information

Besides the silent call feature, the iPhone emergency SOS service includes other important aspects that users should be aware of. For example, you can set up emergency contacts in your Health app, which will be notified after the emergency call is made. They will receive a text message with your current location, and if your location changes, they will get updates.

Another key point is that the feature is not available worldwide. Therefore, it’s essential to check if the service is supported in your country or region. Additionally, the way you access the emergency SOS feature may vary slightly depending on your iPhone model and the version of iOS it’s running.

Lastly, it’s crucial to educate your family and friends about this feature, especially if they are in a more vulnerable position or live alone. This might be the information that could one day save their lives or the lives of others. Remember, preparation is vital, and knowing how to silently call emergency services on an iPhone is something everyone should be familiar with.


  1. Press the side button five times quickly
  2. Drag the Emergency SOS slider
  3. Continue holding the side and volume button for automatic calling

Frequently Asked Questions

Will emergency services be able to find me if I can’t speak?

Yes, if you have “Share My Location” enabled, your location will be sent to emergency services when you make the call.

Can I cancel an emergency call if I activated it by mistake?

Yes, there is a countdown before the call is made, during which you can cancel the call.

Is the silent call feature available on all iPhones?

The feature is available on most iPhones, but the method of activation may vary depending on the model.

Do I need an internet connection for this to work?

No, a call to emergency services can be made without an internet connection, but location services work best with a data connection.

Can I add my medical information to my iPhone for emergency services?

Yes, you can add your medical details in the Health app, which can be accessed by emergency services.


Learning how to silently call emergency services on an iPhone is a simple yet powerful tool that could make a huge difference in an emergency. It’s a feature built with safety and discretion in mind, ensuring that help is just a few quick clicks away. As technology evolves, it’s crucial to keep up with features that enhance our safety and well-being.

Remember to set up your emergency contacts and medical ID in the Health app for a comprehensive safety net. Although we hope never to use it, understanding this feature provides peace of mind and could be a lifeline in unexpected situations. Stay informed, stay prepared, and share this life-saving knowledge with others.