The Feds are planning an update to the national alert system that will allow you to receive cell phone alerts in case of an emergency.
The program, called Personal localised Alerting Network (PLAN), will launch in New York and Washington first later this year. It should be available nationwide next year.
The service will be free for Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T customers, but you’ll need a special chip in your phone to receive the alerts.
It’s also unclear whether or not the alerts will be via a normal text message or some sort of app, but the government is making sure the system won’t be vulnerable to hackers and spammers.
[New York Times via Gizmodo]