Microsoft Teams bug blocked Android emergency call

Google says an unusual bug involving the Microsoft Teams app stopped some Android users being able to make emergency calls.

One US user posted online that he was unable to call 911 for an ambulance for his grandmother, who appeared to be having a stroke.

“My phone got stuck immediately after one ring,” they reported.

Google now says it was able to verify the bug itself and was working on a fix.

“We believe the issue is only present on a small number of devices with the Microsoft Teams app installed when the user is not logged in, and we are currently only aware of one user report related to the occurrence of this bug,” Google said.

The oddity was caused by an “unintended interaction” between the Teams app and the Android operating system.

But because it affects emergency calls, both Google and Microsoft are “heavily prioritising” the problem and Microsoft will roll out a fix soon, it said.

In the meantime, either being signed in to the Teams app, or uninstalling it and reinstalling it, will temporarily fix the issue.

But some users expressed concern that the problem could crop up in the first place.

On the initial Reddit post where the affected user raised the issue, some users speculated that because Microsoft Teams can handle voice calls, it was attempting to handle the emergency call rather than leave it to the default phone dialling app.

Others questioned why an emergency call would ever need to be routed through anything other than a standard mobile phone calling app.

The original post noted the affected person then used their grandmother’s landline phone to make the emergency call.

“Let’s be real, as someone without a landline, I sure as hell don’t want a phone that freaks out when I try to call 911 in the middle of a life-threatening emergency,” they wrote at the time.

“I’m supposed to trust that a phone will do the main thing [it] is built for, and place the call, and let me speak to the human on the other end.”

Google said it takes “issues like this extremely seriously” and thanked the original poster for making the unusual bug known.

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