Apple has chosen Globalstar as its partner for a feature that will allow users of iPhone 14/14 Plus and iPhone 14 Pro/14 Pro Max to send emergency messages from remote locations using satellite, reports Reuters.
Apple will allocate $450 million from its advanced manufacturing fund to satellite infrastructure to support this feature. GlobalStar will receive most of the funding, but the iPhone maker did not specify who else would receive the rest or in what form. While Apple will pay 95% of the approved capital costs for the new Globalstar satellites needed to support the service, the company said it would still need to raise additional funding to build and deploy the satellites. The company said it has brought in investment bank Goldman Sachs & Co and plans to close the financing in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Globalstar manufactures satellites for use in low Earth orbit that operate 36 times closer to Earth than traditional satellites and take less time to send and receive information. This provides faster broadband even in remote areas.
After that, Globalstar shares jumped more than 20% in regular trading, but reversed course and fell slightly lower in Wednesday.
The satellite messaging feature will be available in November through a software update on iPhone 14 models. The service will be free for two years. However, Apple did not say what will happen after this period. First, the ability to send emergency messages from remote locations will work in the US and Canada, and in the coming months it will spread to other markets, the company said.