If your kid is that kid who always forgets to send an “I’m here” text to let you know they’ve arrived safely at their destination — i.e. pretty much every kid — you’re going to love one of the new features in Apple’s iOS 17 update.
While introducing its latest operating system update at the 2023 Apple Worldwide Developer’s Conference on Monday, the tech giant unveiled a new feature in the Messages app called “Check In.” When activated at the beginning of a trip, the safety feature automatically notifies family members or friends when their loved one arrives at their destination. So the next time your teen leaves to go to the mall, or meets up with someone for ice cream, or is out late with plans to crash at a friend’s house, Check In will automatically let you know when they’ve arrived — but that’s not all.
Check In Capabilities
In addition to sending an arrival notification, Check In allows users to share useful information, such as battery percentage and cellular signal levels, giving more peace of mind to those waiting for an update while their loved one is en route.
Check In also shares the course taken during the trip, sends alerts in the event of a delay, notifies when there’s a deviation from the route, and shares when the user hasn’t arrived at their final stop at all.
Users can choose who they wish to share this information with and which bits of information they’d like to be relayed — it’s all customizable within the app. Apple says the sensitive details will be encrypted to prevent any safety concerns, but more information is yet to come ahead of the fall 2023 iOS update.
Why It’s So Great For Parents
Teens aren’t the only ones who forget to send an update message to verify their whereabouts, but parents generally experience more worry when they don’t hear from their kids compared to other adult loved ones. What makes Check In so great for moms and dads is its automatic and real-time capabilities — the feature eliminates the forgetfulness factor.
Thanks to auto tracking, parents will know exactly where their child is during their commute. They can also see if their kid is in a dead zone and doesn’t have service to text, or if their phone battery has died and prevented them from sending an update. And when the teen arrives at their destination, a notification is automatically sent to those set up to receive it, making the “let me know when you’ve made it safely” process more streamlined and stress-free for both kids and parents.
We have a feeling Apple’s sales might see a higher spike than usual ahead of the iOS 17 drop this fall since non-iPhone-using families won’t be able to take advantage of this new feature — a factor the tech giant is undoubtedly aware of.
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