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NTT DoCoMo develops smartphone app for Disaster Warnings in five foreign languages

NTT DoCoMo announced today that it has developed a prototype multilingual app for its Early Warning Area Mail service that will enable emergency warnings of impending earthquakes or tsunamis in five foreign languages. The app will allow people in Japan who do not speak Japanese to receive warnings, both written and verbal, in English, Chinese, Korean, Spanish or Portuguese. In the case of an impending earthquake, for example, an early warning will be issued to people in the predicted area, causing users’ smartphones to begin making a distinctive alarm-like sound followed by a voice readout saying Earthquake in the preset language.

NTT_DoCoMo_logoSimultaneously, the phone will display an Area Mail message that reads “Earthquake Warning: Strong shaking is expected soon. Stay calm and seek shelter nearby. The multilingual text messages have been prepared with support from the Japan Meteorological Agency.

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