Apple introduced its new roadside assistance via satellite feature with iOS 17, available on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 15. If you are unfamiliar, the feature lets you contact roadside assistance company AAA in the United States for vehicle services. The feature comes into play when your iPhone's cellular or Wi-Fi coverage is out. If you are unsure how the feature works, a YouTuber has tested the feature for himself.
The test was conducted by Brian Tong and shared on his YouTube channel for everyone to see the roadside assistance via satellite feature in action. The feature is pretty simple to use, which gets you in contact with a AAA service provider. Brian left his parking lights on in this case, depleting the battery while hiking. Henceforth, he has to use the roadside assistance via satellite feature, available on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 15, to get assistance from AAA company.
When you are out of cellular or Wi-Fi coverage, open the Messages app and start a new message. Type "roadside" into the recipient field, and a "Roadside Assistance" option will appear on the screen. Tap on the option and follow the on-screen instructions. You will be connected to the Globalstar satellite, where you can request help from AAA. Apple says you must be outdoors and under the clear sky and horizon to connect to the satellite.
Brian selected the option to call AAA to jumpstart his car. You can choose additional options like unlocking your car if you left the keys inside the vehicle or a flat tire. You can also connect with AAA if you run out of fuel. According to Apple, you can use the feature for two years for free after activating an iPhone 14 or 15. The service will be part of your AAA membership plan. You can also use the AAA service even if you do not have a membership plan, but you will have to pay for the service individually.
The test was a success for Brian Tong as AAA service arrived on time to jumpstart his car. The feature is helpful if you travel where network coverage is down. Apple's roadside assistance via satellite feature is currently available in the United States. However, the company would roll out support for the feature in additional regions in the future. The service is also available in Canada called CAA, but Apple has yet to offer support for satellite features in the region.