PSA: Android smartphone users can now get earthquakes alerts in advance

June 17, 2021 - 8:22 PM
Youth using smartphones
Stock photo of people using smarthphones. (Pixabay/Dean Moriarty)

Filipino Android users can now receive earthquake alerts in advance on their smartphones as part of Google‘s initiative to create the world’s largest earthquake detection network.

A Reddit user on Wednesday shared a link to a blog post on the internet giant’s website published on June 15. It highlights six new features to be rolled out to Android devices.

Google rolling out Earthquake Alert System starting in PH from Philippines

One of these is the Android Earthquake Alerts System, a feature that allows “people in affected areas to get alerts seconds before an earthquake hits,” giving them advance notice in case they need to seek safety.

The initiative was previously launched in New Zealand and Greece.

It was made available in the Philippines, Turkey, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan on June 15.

“We are prioritizing launching Earthquake Alerts in countries with higher earthquake risks, and hope to launch in more and more countries over the coming year,” Google said.

The Philippines lies on the “Pacific Ring of Fire,” a horseshoe-shaped band of volcanoes and fault lines along the edges of the Pacific Ocean. This makes the archipelago vulnerable to volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

Android Police said that Google’s earthquake alert system works by harnessing the vast network of Android phones to gather information.

“In a way, each Android phone is like a tiny seismometer, given all the sensors they pack inside. Google harnesses that data in bulk to detect the early indications of an earthquake and send out alerts to those that might be impacted,” the report said. — Video from Android via YouTube