Some Android Phones Are Rebooting When People Dial 911

One can argue that the ongoing drop in crime America has enjoyed over the last couple of decades is thanks, in part, to our tighter communications networks. After all, if we see a crime, we can immediately call it in. But that only works if we can actually reach emergency services, and a scary bug in some Android phones isn’t letting 911 calls through.

A Facebook user shows the problem on video:

As you can see, the phone just reboots, and the call doesn’t go through. A lengthy Reddit thread on the issue quickly turned up that this is happening to some OnePlus 5 phones, but also other Androids, and affects both the US and the UK. It’s not clear what the issue is; some suspect that the custom phone app on some smartphones doesn’t play well with Android’s dialer, while others believe it may have something to do with Enhanced 911, a system that automatically gives GPS coordinates to emergency dispatch systems when you call in from a smartphone.

Fortunately, checking for this bug is easy. Just call your local 911 dispatch center on their non-emergency line and schedule a test call. If the test call goes through, great! If not, you might want to lean on your phone manufacturer to fix this bug, pronto.