Wireless Emergency Alerts FAQs
1. What are Wireless Emergency Alerts?
Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are free notifications delivered to your mobile device as part of a public safety system provided by Authorized Senders. The alerts are designed to inform you of imminent threats to safety or missing persons alerts in your area (e.g., AMBER Alerts).
To receive WEAs, you must have a compatible device and be located in an area (e.g., state, county, city) targeted by Authorized Senders to receive the alert.
View a list of compatible devices which includes instructions for device settings related to Wireless Emergency Alerts.
2. Where are Wireless Emergency Alerts available?
Wireless Emergency Alerts are available nationally with very limited exceptions. Accordingly, the following is a message required by the Federal Communication Commission ("FCC"):
Notice Regarding Transmission of Wireless Emergency Alerts (Commercial Mobile Alert Service)
Visible has chosen to offer wireless emergency alerts, including enhanced geo-targeting, within portions of its servicearea as defined by the terms and conditions of its service agreement, on wireless emergency alert capable devices. There is no additional charge for these wireless emergency alerts. Wireless emergency alerts, including enhancedgeo-targeting, may not be available on all devices or in the entire service area, or if a subscriber is outside of the Visible service area.
Notice required by FCC Rule 47 C.F.R. Section 10.240 (Commercial Mobile Alert Service).
3. What information is typically included in a Wireless Emergency Alert?
Wireless Emergency Alerts typically provide the following information:
- Alert Category
- Event Type
Note: Since these alerts are initiated by Authorized Senders, we won't possess any information beyond what's provided in the message. Some alerts may include a link to additional online content provided by an Authorized Sender, but your device may not be able to "tap" or "click" that link directly.
4. Why did I receive a Wireless Emergency Alert?
Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are broadcast in a geographical area to inform subscribers with WEA-compatible devices of imminent threats to safety or missing persons reports in your area. Authorized Senders issue these alerts only within strict guidelines and when they feel it's necessary to do so.
If you received a WEA, you're within the geographical location being targeted by the Authorized Sender. You should review the information in the alert carefully and proceed as directed.
5. Why did I receive a test Wireless Emergency Alert?
Participating carriers are required to support monthly test alerts of the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) system. Only specific persons within the carrier’s network employees, or within specific emergency response agencies should receive these alerts.
If you're receiving test alerts, we thank you for your patience. The manufacturer of your device should release a silent, over the air fix to prevent further receipt of test alerts.
6. Why did I receive multiple or duplicate Wireless Emergency Alerts?
Devices compatible with Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are designed to reject duplicate alerts. Occasionally, Authorized Senders will issue updates to WEAs with new information and a new alert ID. These updates may be very similar to the original alert but will contain supplementary information.
7. Will I receive local or "home" Wireless Emergency Alerts while roaming or traveling?
No, only devices compatible with Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) and geographically located within the targeted geographical areas should receive these alerts. Alerts aren't delivered to any device outside of that area.
8. How do I know if my device is capable of receiving government Wireless Emergency Alerts?
The charts below show the manufacturer, model and version of Wireless Emergency Alerts the device is compatible with. There are three versions of WEA with the following differences:
- WEA 1.0 – Allows for a maximum of 90 characters. For devices marked with a *, messages may also include URLs clickable to websites and phone numbers.
- WEA 2.0 – Allows for a maximum of 360 characters. Spanish-language messages, public safety messages, alert message prioritization and consumer opt-in for receiving state/local test messages are also supported. Includes WEA 1.0
- WEA 3.0 – Offers improved geo-targeting to help focus on areas more affected by an emergency. To benefit from improved geo-targeting, you may need to turn on location services in your device's settings. Includes WEA 1.0 and 2.0
- * = Supports clickable URLs in emergency alerts
- iPhone® 7 - WEA 2.0*
- iPhone® 8 - WEA 2.0*
- iPhone® 8 Plus - WEA 2.0*
- iPhone® X - WEA 2.0*
- iPhone® XS - WEA 3.0*
- iPhone® XS Max - WEA 3.0*
- iPhone® XR - WEA 3.0*
- iPhone® 11 - WEA 3.0*
- iPhone® 11 Pro - WEA 3.0*
- iPhone® Pro Max - WEA 3.0*
- Google Pixel 3 - WEA 2.0*
- Google Pixel 3 XL - WEA 2.0*
- Google Pixel 3a - WEA 2.0*
- Google Pixel 3a XL - WEA 2.0*
- Google Pixel 4 - WEA 2.0*
- Google Pixel 4 XL - WEA 2.0*
- Stylo™ 5 - WEA 2.0*
- Motorola moto Z4 - WEA 2.0*
- Motorola moto g7 power - WEA 2.0*
- Moto e6 - WEA 2.0*
- Galaxy A50 - WEA 2.0*
- Galaxy S8 - WEA 2.0*
- Galaxy S8+ - WEA 2.0*
- Galaxy S9 - WEA 2.0*
- Galaxy S10e - WEA 2.0*
- Visible R2 - WEA 1.0*
- Visible ZTE Blade A7 Prime - WEA 2.0*
- Visible ZTE Blade 10 Prime - WEA 2.0*
9. Is there anything Visible can do to make my device capable of receiving Wireless Emergency Alerts?
Special software and hardware changes are necessary to support Wireless Emergency Alert capabilities. Unfortunately, these changes can't be retrofitted to older model devices.
10. I believe I was in a targeted geographic alert zone. Why didn’t I receive a Wireless Emergency Alert?
Wireless Emergency Alerts are sent to cell sites providing wireless service to very specific areas. Your device may have been receiving service in a different area, or even from an adjacent area cell site, which wasn't targeted by the alert. Signal coverage and device behavior also can affect whether you receive an alert.
Most WEA alerts will be re-broadcast more than once to reach the maximum number of devices in the targeted area. Once a device has received an alert, it won't accept duplicate or identical alerts.
Note: Alerts will only be received by compatible devices. Without a compatible device, you won't receive an alert even if you are within the targeted geographic location.
11. I have a device compatible with Wireless Emergency Alert. I am traveling today, but I did not receive an alert. Why?
Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are geographically targeted. Only subscribers with WEA compatible devices served by cell sites within the targeted alert zone will receive alerts.
WEA compatible devices operating significantly outside of the targeted geographical areas won't receive those alerts.
12. I have a messaging block for my phone, will I still receive a Wireless Emergency Alert?
Yes, you will. WEA alerts aren’t sent as text or multimedia messages and therefore aren’t blocked by messaging block.
13. Will I be charged for receiving a Wireless Emergency Alert?
No, we provide Wireless Emergency Alerts for FREE.
14. Can I opt out of receiving Wireless Emergency Alerts?
Yes, you may change your device’s settings to opt out of Imminent Danger, AMBER and Public Safety Alerts, but you can’t opt out of Presidential Alerts. Check your device’s User Guide for instructions
These are the four types of Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA):
- Presidential Alerts: About news of national authority concern
- Imminent Danger Alerts: Severe and Extreme alerts about weather events and threat levels
- AMBER Alerts: About the disappearance of persons (minors or otherwise)
- Public Safety Messages: Additional information on actions to take in response to one of the other alert types. (May not be available on older devices.)
15. I’ve received a Wireless Emergency Alert. What should I do to ensure my safety or obtain additional information?
Review the information included in the Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) that you received, and follow any instructions that may be listed. Authorized Senders may also release updates to WEAs with further information as needed. Please watch for subsequent updates and review them carefully for new details.
Note: Because these alerts are initiated by Authorized Senders, we don't have any information beyond what's provided in the message. Some alerts may include a link to additional online content provided by an Authorized Sender, but your device may not be able to “tap” or “click” that link directly.
16. Is Visible or the government tracking my location as part of the Wireless Emergency Alert system?
No, your location isn't requested, provided or maintained in the delivery of a Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA). WEAs are broadcasted within counties or zones determined by Authorized Senders. All devices compatible with WEA that are located within a targeted zone are designed to receive these alerts.
17. I have the same, or similar, device as someone I know who received a Wireless Emergency Alert. Why didn’t I receive this alert?
Devices are released containing differing revisions of software and firmware. Earlier devices of the same or similar model may not be capable of receiving the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) or using newer alerting capabilities. If your device is compatible with WEA and you were located within the targeted location for the alert at the time it was sent, you’ll receive the alert. If not, your device won’t receive them. Signal coverage and device hardware or software behavior also may affect whether you receive the alert.
18. What geographic locations will receive Wireless Emergency Alerts?
Authorized Senders determine which locations will receive a specific alert based on the area defined by the geographical latitude and longitude of the emergency. As circumstances dictate, Authorized Senders will identify targeted areas for each specific alert. Devices compatible with Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) that are operating within the area targeted are designed to receive the WEA. Those devices operating in areas not targeted by Authorized Senders won't receive the alert.
19. If I’m on a call or using data when a Wireless Emergency Alert is released, will I receive the alert?
For some newer 4G devices, yes. But if you have an older model and are engaged in a voice or data session when alerts are released, you won't receive the alert. Alerts may be re-broadcast more than once in the targeted geographic locations to reach as many devices as possible. However, after that interval has concluded, or the alerts have been superseded, the original alert will no longer be released.
20. What are enhanced Wireless Emergency Alert capabilities?
Some newer devices can support alerts with additional capabilities you may consider helpful. These are:
- Public Safety Alerts. These provide additional information on actions to take in response to one of the other alert
- Clickable Links. An Authorized Sender may include a link to additional online content.
- More Characters. Some newer devices can deliver alerts with up to 360 characters, alerts otherwise are limited to 90 characters.
- Spanish Language. Check your device setting instructions to activate this feature. Whether a particular alert is available in Spanish also depends on the Authorized Sender’s delivery capability.
- Concurrent Presentation. Allows you to receive an alert during a voice or data session.
- State and Local Testing. Allows state and local governments to conduct tests using messages that you will not receive (unless you choose to receive them).
- Enhanced GeoTargeting. Reduces the chance that you will receive the alert if you are outside the Authorized Sender’s targeted area. You may need to enable location services on your device to use this capability.
Hearing Aid Information
Visible offers many phone models that meet the FCC’s standards for hearing aid compatibility.
Here is a list of Visible's hearing-aid compatible phones along with their HAC ratings. These phones all meet the FCC’s “M” and “T” rating standards.
|Brand||Phone||HAC Rating||FCC ID|
|Apple||iPhone 11 Pro||M3/T4||BCG-E3305A|
|Apple||iPhone 11 Pro Max||M3/T4||BCG-E3306A|
|Apple||iPhone XS Max||M3/T4||BCG-E3219A|
|Apple||iPhone 8 Plus||M3/T4||BCG-E3160A|
|Motorola||Motorola moto Z4||M4/T4||IHDT56XS1|
|Motorola||Motorola moto g7 power||M4/T3||IHDT56XQ1|
|Motorola||Motorola moto e6||M3/T3||IHDT56YA3|
|Google Pixel 3||M3/T3||A4RG013A|
|Google Pixel 3XL||M3/T3||A4RG013C|
|Google Pixel 3a||M3/T3||A4RG020E|
|Google Pixel 3a XL||M3/T3||A4RG020A|
|Google Pixel 4||M3/T3||A4RG020I|
|Google Pixel 4 XL||M3/T3||A4RG020J|
|ZTE||Visible ZTE Blade A7 Prime||M4/T4||SRQ-Z6201V|
|ZTE||Visible ZTE Blade 10 Prime||M4/T4||SRQ-Z6530V|
A note on new technologies: Phones and mobile devices that incorporate new technologies may not yet be tested for hearing aid compatibility. Those devices will be labeled with the following information:
This phone has been tested and rated for use with hearing aids for some of the wireless technologies that it uses. However, there may be some newer wireless technologies used in this phone that have not been tested yet for use with hearing aids. It is important to try the different features of this phone thoroughly and in different locations, using your hearing aid or cochlear implant, to determine if you hear any interfering noise. Consult your service provider about its return and exchange policies and for information on hearing aid compatibility.
Visible’s digital network supports TTY-compatible devices and real-time text (RTT) compatible devices. Please note that not all wireless phones are TTY or RTT compatible. To verify that your device is TTY or RTT compatible, please refer to its user guide.
More about Hearing Aid Compatibility (HAC) ratings
Phones are given an M-rating based on their radio frequency (RF) emissions level and signal quality. Phones with a higher M-rating have a lower RF emissions level and a higher signal quality. M-ratings range from M1 to M4, with M4 being the best. Customers who plan to listen to phone calls with their hearing aids in microphone mode (M mode) should look for a phone with an M-rating of M3 or M4. Your phone and your hearing aid will each have their own M-rating. For the best experience, it is recommended that the phone’s M-rating and the hearing aid’s M-rating add up to at least 5.
Phones are given a T-rating based on their ability to operate with telecoil-equipped hearing aids. A telecoil is a small device built into some hearing aids that allows for a better experience when using a telephone or listening device. T-ratings range from T1 to T4, with T4 being the best. Customers who plan to listen to phone calls with their hearing aids in telecoil mode (T mode) should look for a phone with a T-rating of T3 or T4. If your hearing aid is equipped with a telecoil, it will have its own T-rating. For the best experience, it is recommended that the phone’s T-rating and the hearing aid’s T-rating add up to at least 5. To use telecoil mode (T mode) on your telecoil-equipped hearing aid, switch the hearing aid to the T position. Or, press a button on the hearing aid to select the telecoil setting.
FCC Hearing Aid Information
Visit www.fcc.gov/hearing-aid-compatibility-wireless-telephones to learn more how wireless phones are rated for hearing aid compatibility.
Visit https://www.gari.info/hearing.cfm for additional information regarding hearing aid-compatible and non-hearing aid-compatible handset models.
Important Information about Visible’s Broadband Internet Access Services
Visible has compiled this information for our customers and others interested in our wireless Broadband Internet Access Services.
- "Broadband Internet Access Services" refers to services that provide the capability to transmit data to and receive data from all or substantially all Internet endpoints.
- "Data Services" refers to all Visible plans that connect your device(s) to the internet.
This information covers all Visible services that provide you with internet access through our Data Services over the Verizon 4G LTE network. Your Visible Service Terms and Conditions governing your use of Visible Data Services and containing information on prohibited network uses can be found at https://www.visible.com/legal/terms-and-conditions.html.
If you have questions not answered here, please contact our customer care:
- Chat on https://www.visible.com
- Text @99370
- Facebook message (Visible Mobile on Facebook)
- Tweet @VisibleCare
For accessibility-related questions, you can also contact us at email@example.com.
What types of service plans does Visible offer for customers who want Broadband Internet Access Services?
We offer unlimited high-speed data access for compatible 4G LTE devices with no overage charges for $40 per month on a prepaid basis. Taxes and fees included!!
What speeds and performance can a Visible Broadband Internet Access Services customer expect, and where are these speeds available?
Visible runs on the Verizon 4G LTE network. Visible expects members on the Verizon 4G LTE network will experience typical download speeds of 5-12 Mbps. Many members are getting more. Upload speeds are typically 2-5 Mbps. Visible seeks to transmit video downloads or streams to smartphones at 480p. With respect to latency (how much time it takes for a packet of data to get from one designated point to another) for use of real-time data applications, we expect network to device (round-trip) latency to be about 150 milliseconds.
Visible 4G LTE coverage information is available at https://www.visible.com/coverage. You must be using a Visible-approved device on the Verizon 4G LTE network. Whether you experience these speeds depends on many factors, including among others, the type of device, the programs running on the device, your location, and how many other customers are attempting to use the same spectrum resources, including both mobile broadband internet access and other non-broadband internet access services that share the network.
Do we take any steps to manage the flow of data on the network used for Broadband Internet Access Services? Visible strives to provide members with the best experience when using the Verizon 4G LTE network. We have implemented optimization technologies to transmit data files in a more efficient manner to allow available network capacity to benefit our members. The optimization process is agnostic as to the content itself and to the content’s source and we invest much effort to avoid changing text, image, and video files in the optimization process. While any change to the file is likely to be indiscernible, the optimization process may minimally impact the appearance of the file as displayed on a customer's device. To optimize members’ video viewing experiences while ensuring a high quality experience for other users of the network, we seek to transmit video downloads or streams to smartphones at 480p, without distinction based on the content of the video or the source website.
We may prioritize your data behind other traffic if the cell site you are connected to begins experiencing high demand during the duration of your session. Once the demand on the site lessens, or if you connect to a different site not experiencing high demand, your speed will return to normal.
How does Visible support an open internet?
To enable our consumer broadband customers to take advantage of all the internet has to offer, we make these commitments:
1. Full access. We will not block any legal internet content, applications, or services based on their source or content.
2. Full speed. We will not throttle or slow down any internet traffic based on its source or content.
3. Fair handling of traffic. We will not accept payments from any company to deliver its traffic faster or sooner than other traffic on our consumer broadband service, nor will we deliver our affiliates’ internet traffic faster or sooner than third parties’. We will not prioritize traffic in a way that harms competition or consumers.
4. Full information. We will describe our internet access services and our plans in plain language so customers can make informed choices.
5. High quality service. Our overriding commitment is to provide you with the high quality service you expect from Visible. To achieve this, none of our commitments precludes us from reasonably managing our networks to ensure everyone has the broadband experience they demand and deserve.
Visible does not offer non-BIAS data services that share the same network.
What security measures have been deployed for Visible Broadband Internet Access Services?
We recognize that a reliable network must be, among other things, a secure network. Our members are empowered by a network that is available when they need it. We work to protect the network against outside attacks, tampering, malicious activity and network events that may in any way disrupt or degrade your ability to use Visible data services.
Every day, we seek to maintain the highest levels of network reliability and performance.
We guard against traffic patterns that appear to be associated with disruptive or malicious intent. Unless part of an opted-in customer service, we do not block lawful traffic based on content or subject. Occasionally, cases arise where we must make a judgment, determining that the value of protecting our entire customer base from malicious or other adverse, network-impacting traffic outweighs access issues experienced by a few.
Examples include Internet sources or destinations that are major sources of spam and sources that aggressively scan Internet addresses or those that have attempted attacks against the network infrastructure or customer end-points.
We block a limited number of Internet addresses that are disruptive or malicious and typically persistent. This is based on our own analysis and third party intelligence. We do not block sites based on content or subject, unless the Internet address hosts unlawful content or is blocked as part of an opted-in customer service. We regularly review and modify the list of blocked Internet addresses, taking any off the list that are no longer perceived as a threat.
Our goal is to limit or contain the impact, or potential impact, of malicious software found on customer equipment. Where practical, we take measures to block the instructions that this malicious software, or "malware," receives from the outside, limiting the impact on the network and preventing high, unexpected billed usage.
If you would like information about access to a particular Internet site or destination, please contact us via the customer support methods described above.
Does Visible allow consumers to use non-branded devices and applications for its Broadband Internet Access Services?
Devices that are currently certified for use with Visible services are listed in the “Phone Compatibility” section of the FAQs. We strive to expand the range of compatible devices on an ongoing basis. If you want to activate a device on the Visible network that you did not purchase from us, please be aware that certification of such device by Visible for use on our network does not mean that we have made any determination as to the call quality or other functionality provided by the device. Please contact us via our customer support channels or via the “Feedback” page on our site or in our app.
Some individual devices may not support specific applications. You should investigate the capabilities and functions of any device before buying it to determine whether it supports the applications that you want to use.
How does Visible protect the privacy of its mobile Broadband Internet Access Services customers?
How can customers who have concerns or questions about their Broadband Internet Access Services contact Visible?
If you have concerns or questions about Visible Wireless Broadband Internet Access Services, including concerns or questions about the performance characteristics of, or the terms of service for, these services, or about our network management practices, you can reach us through the "Contact Us" methods detailed above. For information on resolving disputes, please review your Visible Service Terms and Conditions at https://www.visible.com/legal/terms-and-conditions.html.