Google Expands Car Crash Detection to More Countries on Pixel Phones

Google, after leading the industry with its innovative Car Crash Detection feature on Pixel phones, has expanded its availability to five more countries. This safety feature can potentially save lives by automatically alerting emergency services in the event of a car accident. However, there are certain limitations, particularly related to device compatibility and language support in the newly added regions.

Expansion Details

Google’s Car Crash Detection, a vital safety feature on Pixel devices, has been expanded to five additional countries, bringing the total to 20 nations globally. The newly added countries are:

• Austria

• Belgium

• India

• Portugal

• Switzerland

This feature, once activated, uses the phone’s sensors to detect a car collision. If a potential accident is detected, the phone will vibrate and sound an alarm, giving the user 60 seconds to confirm their status. If there’s no response, the emergency services are automatically contacted.

Language and Regional Support

The expansion does come with certain caveats regarding language support. While countries like India have been added, prominent languages like Hindi are not yet supported by the feature. Currently, the feature supports 11 languages:

• Danish

• Dutch

• English

• French

• Canadian French

• Italian

• Japanese

• Mandarin Chinese

• Norwegian

• Spanish

• Swedish

Device Compatibility

Even though Car Crash Detection works on devices as old as the Pixel 3, the support in the newly added countries is confined to the Pixel 4a and newer models, including the Pixel Fold. For users curious about the feature’s availability on their device, they can navigate to Settings > Safety & emergency > Car crash detection.

How It Works

  • The Car Crash Detection feature is housed within the Personal Safety app that comes pre-installed on Pixel phones.
  • In case of an accident, the phone uses a combination of its accelerometer, microphone, and other sensors to detect the collision.
  • If an accident is suspected, the phone vibrates, rings loudly, and presents the user with options like “I’m OK,” “No crash,” “Minor crash,” and “Call 911.”
  • The user can also convey the nature of their emergency without speaking by selecting options like “Medical,” “Fire,” or “Police”.
  • Users can also configure the app to share their status and location with pre-selected emergency contacts.

Google vs Apple: Safety Features Showdown

  • Google’s Pixel was among the first to introduce the Car Crash Detection feature, but Apple wasn’t far behind, introducing a similar capability in 2021.
  • Unlike Google’s regional restrictions, Apple offers this safety feature across all countries where iPhones are sold, providing a more universal approach.
  • The Google Pixel Watch 2, although packed with several safety features, does not include the Car Crash Detection function.
  • Apple’s iPhone 14 and recent Apple Watch models, on the other hand, are equipped with crash detection capabilities.

Challenges and Considerations

While Google’s initiative to expand the Car Crash Detection feature is a significant step forward in smartphone safety, there are still challenges to consider: 

  • Localization: Language support is a significant barrier to the widespread adoption of this feature. As seen in the case of India, while the country has been added to the supported list, prominent regional languages are still not accommodated. Catering to diverse linguistic landscapes is crucial for ensuring the feature’s efficacy and accessibility. 
  • Hardware Limitations: The decision to limit the feature to newer Pixel models in the recently added countries may exclude a portion of users who could benefit from such safety features. Ensuring backward compatibility should be a priority.


Google’s effort in enhancing the safety of its users through advanced features like Car Crash Detection on Pixel phones is commendable. As the tech giant continues its expansion across countries, users worldwide will have access to potentially lifesaving tools right in their pockets. For a deeper dive into Google’s safety features and compatibility, visit Google’s official support page.”. However, users need to remain updated with the latest feature rollouts and ensure that their devices are compatible with such safety tools.

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