How to activate Hey Siri on your iPhone with iOS 10

The first major revolution in the way we interact with the apps and services we rely on every day came when Apple launched the Siri-powered iPhone 4. The personal assistant showed that even smartphones, with their advanced multitouch screens that make you feel like you're directly manipulating your photos and more, have room to improve. Apple has innovated again by adding the Hey Siri command.

When the feature is enabled, saying "Hey Siri" replaces the long press of the home button. This makes it even easier for you to choose the next song to play in your car. You can also do other things, without having to interact directly with your iPhone. Siri can get you sports scores, change settings, and send messages, and you don't have to tap once.


Read: 39 iOS 10 Tips & Tricks and Hidden Features

Here's how to activate Hey Siri on your iPhone with iOS 10.

Set up Hey Siri in iOS 10

Before you start, there is something you need to know.

Hey Siri has been around for a while. Apple didn't add the feature with iOS 10, it only improved it. You will need iOS 10 loaded on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch before you can see what is shown in this tutorial on your device. That being said, phones, tablets, and the like stuck on iOS 9 still have Hey Siri capability. It will just be in the general settings area instead of what is shown here.

Unlock your iPhone as you normally would. If you use your finger with TouchID, do it now. Enter your PIN now if you're not using TouchID. If you are not using any type of security on your iPhone, press the home button to unlock your device.

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Welcome to the home screen. Find the Settings app on your home screen. Keep in mind that if you've rearranged your apps, the Settings app may be buried in a folder. The Settings app is in the lower right corner of our screen in this example.

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Welcome to the Settings screen. Naturally, enabling Hey Siri is a feature found in Siri's settings. Scroll down a bit until you see the Siri icon. Tap Siri .

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To use the Hey Siri command in iOS 10, you must first activate the personal assistant. Flip the switch marked Siri to activate Siri.

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Next, your iPhone will ask you if you're sure you want to activate the personal assistant since it relies on Apple's servers and your personal information to make your life easier. Tap Activate Siri if you're comfortable accepting Apple's terms.

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Find the Allow "Hey Siri" field and toggle the switch to the right to turn it on.

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iOS 10 lets you keep listening to Siri without having to keep your iPhone plugged into your desk or in the car. Apple has also added a setup screen to guide you through the process of enabling voice control. Tap Continue.

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Now your iPhone will ask you to say a few sentences so that it can better understand your voice. Note that you might want to do this in a quiet place as your iPhone will pick up any nearby background noise.

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Now that you're back in the Siri settings area, toggle the Access when locked switch. This will allow you to access most Siri features without having to unlock your phone first.

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Use Hey Siri in iOS 10

Now that you've got Hey Siri working, it's time to get to the basics of using it. First and foremost, Hey Siri is not a universal replacement for interacting with your iPhone. You're going to have to interact with your device to get things done that Siri isn't yet able to streamline.

That being said, one of the restrictions Apple dropped with iOS 9 was the requirement that modern iPhones be plugged into a power outlet before Hey Siri could be used. With iPhone 6s, iPhone 7, iPhone 7s Plus, and iPhone 6s Plus, you can use the Hey Siri command anytime, even when your smartphone isn't plugged in. Don't worry, turning on Hey Siri doesn't seem to ruin iPhone battery life. At least, that is not the case in our experience. Be sure to keep an eye on your battery gauge for the first few days the feature is enabled.

Siri Tips Tips Hidden Features - 3

Every time you say "Hey Siri," your iPhone will be ready for a command. You can tell it to play a certain artist, album, or song from your music collection by saying "Play" and the name of the song, artist, or album. "Hey Siri, play Beats 1" is a great way to quickly start streaming Apple's new radio station. Of course, if you don't have a car with a Bluetooth stereo, Siri will play the music through the iPhone speakers.

You can also call your various contacts without having to go through too many steps. By simply saying "Call" and the person's name. Conversational language like “Hey Siri, I want Chinese”. Siri will get search results for you and give you directions and more if needed.

When unplugged, your iPhone or iPad must have Low Power Mode turned off for the "Hey Siri" command to work effectively. This is because Low Power Mode limits what apps can do in the background.