For those of us who are old enough to remember, or if you listen to local radio stations, the United States government periodically tests is emergency alert system. The test gives an audible series of tones to alert you to an important message or warning from your local, state or the federal government. To this point, testing was not heard on iPhones but with iOS 15.6, you can enable it if you are into that kind of thing.
If you go to Settings>Notifications and scroll all the way down the page, you will now see a new option, “Test Alerts”. If you enable this, when the government does its monthly testing, you will hear those test tones on your iPhone – right in the middle of that important meeting.
While I appreciate that Apple has added this government testing alert option in iOS 15.6, I honestly cannot think of a reason why you would want to enable it. Much like any government alert, like Amber Alerts, you cannot easily quite this notification. So if you are in that meeting or a library or wherever that you need to be quiet, you don’t have much control over it.
And for those who are curious, the alert notifications are not available for your iPad, even if you have a cellular enabled model. The governmental alerts are only available on your iPhone. Also, as you can see form the image above, should you want to do so, you can disable all of these alerts on your iPhone. That may not be the best idea as you could miss an important emergency notice while on-the-go.