New UK ‘Armageddon’ alert test spurs discussion on future impact


Leila Meilman

The U.K. government ran the “Armageddon” test alert April 23. The alert informed the public of the test and its use through a phone notification and an alarm sound.

Leila Meilman, Reporter

A new “Armageddon” alert was tested across mobile phones in the U.K. April 23. The technology will be used in cases of life-threatening emergencies and severe weather-related events, and the alert will have the ability to send a message to up to 90% of mobile users within the local area, according to The Mirror

Jagger Price (’26) said she was initially alarmed by the disruptive noise of the alert and believes its use could create more anxiety.

“It may create more fear in an emergency, as it is very alarming and distracting, especially if it were to take place in a school environment,” Price said.

Felix Andreasson (’24) said he thinks the “Armageddon” alert can be useful in its efficiency.

“It is a really useful technology to warn people because pretty much everybody has some sort of mobile device on them at all times, so if there are any large-scale disasters, it’s a good way to get that information out there,” Andreasson said. 

Technology Support Specialist Dennis Njenga said he received the alert, and later discovered through social media that there had been faults in the test alarm. Njenga said it is dangerous that some do not receive the alert in a real emergency situation.

If it’s an alert like that, everyone should be getting it and not a single person should be missed off.”

— Technology Support Specialist Dennis Njenga

“It is planned that everyone across [the U.K.] should be getting that alert on their phones, so for me that’s a negative thing of just maybe disadvantaging some people by not being aware of what’s going on,” Njenga said. “If it’s an alert like that, everyone should be getting it and not a single person should be missed off.”

Price said the alert made her feel more safe overall, although it could bring danger to people who do not receive the alert.

“The notification definitely put me more at ease after hearing that alarming noise, and it will bring me comfort in my surroundings in knowing what’s going on in future instances,” Price said. “The fact that not everyone heard the alert could be an issue in the future that I am hoping they will work towards fixing so that everyone will be safer in the future.”

Andreasson said the creation of the “Armageddon” alert is not surprising because of the use of similar alerts in the U.S. 

The notification definitely put me more at ease after hearing that alarming noise.”

— Jagger Price ('26)

Furthermore, Andreasson said although the U.K. is not prone to many natural disasters, there could be other possible uses for the alert. He said this may include using the alert to spread more information and to share “updates in the case of a similar pandemic to COVID-19.”

Moreover, Njenga said the alert will be important in emergencies which everyone needs to be aware of. He said the alert will be a useful tool to mitigate dangerous situations. 

“This will be key in the sense of major alerts, whether that’s terror threats or emergencies that we all need to be aware of,” Njenga said. “This would help us in the sense of bringing awareness and helping people to understand what’s going on in their areas.”

Overall, Andreasson said he is hoping the U.K. government will find more beneficial uses for the alert in the future aside from the environmental aspects of it, such as more critical emergency situations.

“As we’ve seen from other alerts in other countries, the ‘Armageddon’ alert is a really convenient way to access a large group of people and will help the U.K,” Andreasson said. “Whether that is within environmental issues or something else, it will protect us in a much more efficient way than in the past.”