Cell broadcast starts in December with a test: when the mobile phone warns of danger [Update 2: Letzte Infos zum Warntag]

Cell broadcast starts in December with a test: when the mobile phone warns of danger [Update 2: Letzte Infos zum Warntag]

Original article from 10/28/2022: For a long time, cell broadcasting was not an issue in Germany, but then came the floods that devastated towns and cities in North Rhine-Westphalia in particular. The work is ongoing, but it is clear that a good warning system would not have hurt and so Cell Broadcast was launched. The system will start with a test on December 8th. After that, warnings are sent to all devices in danger regions.

Hazards can be storms, fire, flood and the like. The warnings are controlled by the regional emergency services; sent via the masts in the affected region; it is received by all smartphones registered to these masts. The warnings appear on the display without any action on your part.

That’s what Cell Broadcast is all about

The cell broadcast was set up in Germany by several authorities, network operators and mobile phone manufacturers. End devices usually master the technology because it is used internationally. News on December 8th is not a scam but the starting signal for the warning system. The Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance (BBK) is responsible for supervision; Messages come from regional control centers that also use the NINA or KatWarn apps.

In order to increase the reach of such apps and to make yourself more independent from the Internet, the cell broadcast should warn people. This is done anonymously because every device registered on the transmitted mast is notified – regardless of a telephone number. That’s why cell broadcast isn’t an SMS, because you need a phone number for it.

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Logically, it follows that only users who are logged in to the transmission tower and whose device supports cell broadcast can be warned. If there is no message on cell broadcast on December 8th, call it Consumer center NRW various possible causes:

  • Your device is not enabled to receive emergency notifications. How to switch on the reception, we show below in a guide.
  • Your device’s software is not yet ready to receive the alerts. Check if there is an update for your operating system and install it.
  • Your SIM card does not support the technology. Check with your cell phone provider.
  • The radio cell at your location does not yet support the technology. Check with your cell phone provider.
  • Your device is off when the alert is sent. Alerts are sent multiple times (usually 5 times spaced 2 minutes apart), with your device ignoring retries after the alert has already been displayed. However, the messages are not stored in the wireless network after they have been sent. Therefore, they cannot be delivered with a time delay, as is the case with SMS, for example.
  • Your device is only connected to WiFi, but not to a mobile network. For example, if you use a tablet that only has a WLAN or WiFi function, it cannot log into a cell phone cell. So you cannot receive cell broadcast messages on it.

problems can arise www.warning-der-bevoelkerung.de be reported and will then be investigated. Feedback should also be possible in the NINA warning app and on the websites and social media channels of the Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance (BBK).

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Users can suppress alerts depending on the device, but not level 1; these are always played. The control center classifies the levels depending on the threat situation. With iOS, reception is automatically activated and users do not have to do anything if they have not already changed the settings. These can be found under Settings > Notifications > Official Alerts. For Android, it depends on the device. A first look is worthwhile in “Settings > Security and emergencies > Emergency notifications for mobile devices” If you can’t find that, the second place to go should be the messaging app that is used to send and receive text messages, where the function is often hidden. If both are unsuccessful, you should seek help from the manufacturer and model.

iPhones ready after update

Update 1 from November 2nd, 2022: Apple has released an update for iOS and the iPhones are now ready for cell broadcasting in Germany. In the settings for the notifications there are now three switches that can be used to configure the warning system. If iOS 15.7.1 or 16 and newer is installed, you will receive a brief notification that the network operator settings have been updated.

Update 2 from 12/07/2023: Cell broadcast will be tested tomorrow with a nationwide warning tag. The message will be sent between 11:00 a.m. and 11:10 a.m. If you want to receive the warning message, you should check the settings of your mobile device – cell broadcast must always be activated there and the corresponding option must be selected for warning messages. Some devices have disabled alerts only. The devices should already have received the necessary updates.

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“When you receive a warning message via cell broadcast, the mobile device usually emits a loud warning signal. At the same time, it displays a text message, which is also read out on some devices: for example, a warning about a fire, an accident or a natural disaster. The text contains instructions on behavior and also tips for information. Important: The competent authority or ministry is responsible for the content of the warning,” writes Deutsche Telekom, for example, in its announcement.