Japan’s disaster alerts will work with all Android 8.1 phones
The country’s Telecommunications Carriers Association has now announced that, starting on Android 8.1, any phone running Google’s latest OS will also be able pick up these alerts. It’ll also pick up other area-specific disaster information, including terrorist activities. Emergency notifications can be switched on iOS devices in the settings menu, although according to Apple’s support page, it appears to still be tied to Japan’s three major carriers.
The TCA doesn’t offer a specific date, as the onus will be on phone makers (and Google) to get the latest version of Android onto smartphones in order to benefit from the feature. Until then, third-party apps will remain the best bet for disaster warnings in Japan.