Ability to receive an alert: Consumers should check their specific device against their wireless service providers’ list of wireless public alerting compatible devices. If your device is not on the carrier list, it is not Wireless Public Alerting compatible.
In addition, consumers should ensure that the SOFTWARE on their Wireless Public Alerting compatible device is kept up to date. Outdated software may affect a device’s ability to receive an alert even if it is compatible.
Timing of software updates may also impact whether devices will be compatible on other wireless service provider’s LTE or 5G networks in instances when customers switch providers but bring their own phone.
Connection to LTE or 5G network: Compatible devices must be connected to an LTE or 5G network at the time an alert is distributed. The symbol, usually located in the upper right-hand corner of your device, will help you to identify what network you are connected to.
However, it is important to understand that even if you’re in an area that has LTE or 5G coverage, what you are doing with your device at the time an alert is issued will impact your ability to receive it. For example:
- If you have set your device to Wi-Fi only, you will not receive an alert.
- If you are on a voice call at the time of the alert, you may not receive an alert. Voice calls may move your connection to a non-LTE or non-5G network, like 3G, even if you are in an LTE or 5G area.
- If you are in a location that makes signal reception difficult at the time of the alert, such as an underground garage, you may not receive an alert.
Device settings: The emergency alert will follow user settings:
- The VOLUME of the alert will be the same volume as that which is set on your phone. Most devices have multiple setting controls for different features such as ringtone, media, notifications, and system. The Canadian Alerting Attention Signal is usually controlled by the Notification setting.
- If your device is set with a REMINDER feature, this may cause the alert to repeat until you acknowledge it. This feature can be turned off following directions in your device’s User Guide.
- If your device is set to SILENT or DO NOT DISTURB mode you might not see or notice the alert even though your device has received it. The emergency alert might be listed with other notifications.