This is a feature that is currently exclusive to Pixel smartphones, but very recent clues show that it will soon be extended to other Android devices. The 9 to 5 Google site explored the innards of a Google application on June 28 and found evidence showing the expansion of functionality, at an undetermined date.
Today, only Pixels are eligible for the feature, provided they have at least Android 10. This applies to Pixel 3, 3a, 3 XL, 4, 4XL, 4a, 4a 5, 5G, 5A, 6, 6a and 6 Pro. Older models are not taken into account, that is to say products released before 2018. But, in fact, the option was in fact very restricted, because the vast majority of the Android ecosystem is private.
Sensors found on most smartphones
The option uses various sensors commonly found in phones (like the accelerometer, gyroscope, and even the microphone) to guess what’s going on around it. On a strictly technical level, there is no reason why a smartphone from another brand cannot also mobilize this equipment to detect a brutal shock.
The limitation of the tool is in fact elsewhere: the option obviously cannot have absolute certainty whether the sudden decelerations are indeed a crash or if it is not something else — the tool could be fooled by a somewhat abrupt carousel ride. When activating the tool, Google also warns that there may be false positives.
In the same way, Google also reports that a real accident could also pass under the radar of the smartphone. A collision that is not very violent could thus not reach the thresholds defined on each sensor to estimate that there is a problem. If the phone is also destroyed during the crash, it won’t be of much help to call for help.
If you have a Pixel smartphone, the option activates as follows:
- Go to the phone settings;
- Scroll down to “Security and Emergencies”;
- Select “Car Accident Detection”;
- Enable the feature by checking the option.
The option activated, it will be able to send an alert to help, after a delay of 60 seconds – to give time to the owner to say that everything is fine, in fact. For a minute the phone vibrates and on the screen you can tell whether it is OK or not. If there is no answer, an automatic call to 17 is sent, with geolocation data.