The voice assistant has a few new tricks up its sleeve in the latest versions of iOS and iPadOS. Here’s how to use them.
With the release of iOS/iPadOS 16, Apple has brightened up Siri with some neat new features: the voice assistant can now automatically send a text based on your command without asking you for confirmation; when you end a phone call with someone, you can ask Siri to hang up; you can better control how long Siri waits for you to finish speaking your question or request; and you can find out what to ask Siri based on your current app or screen by saying, “What can I do here?”
What you need to use the latest Siri features
First, make sure you have iOS/iPadOS 16 or later installed on your device. Go to Settings, select General, then Software Update. You will be notified that the operating system is up to date or you will be prompted to download and install the latest update.
Access the latest features in Siri
Send an SMS automatically
When you tell Siri to send a text to someone, the voice assistant normally asks for confirmation before sending it, but you can now omit that extra step.
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Go to Settings, select Siri & search, then tap Send messages automatically. On the next screen, turn on the toggle for this setting. By default, the options to automatically send a message through the headphones and through CarPlay are on (Image A).
To try this, tell Siri to send a text message to one of your contacts. Compose the message and Siri will now send it without asking you to confirm (Figure B).
Hang up the call
If you end a call with someone and your iPhone isn’t within reach to hang up, ask Siri for help. Say, “Hey Siri, hang up” and Siri hangs up (Figure C).
Manage Siri’s pause time
After you give a command or ask a question, Siri will wait a certain amount of time before responding, in case you’re not ready yet. Now you can determine the length of that waiting time.
To set this up, go to Settings, select Accessibility and tap Siri. In the Siri Pause Time section, you can change the setting from Standard to Longer or Longest. Then talk to Siri to see how long it takes for it to respond until you’re done. Play around with the three different pause times to see which one works best for you (Figure D).
Insert an emoji with your voice
Adding an emoji to a text message usually requires some effort to find and select it, but now you can ask Siri to add it.
Open the Messages app and tap the microphone icon to dictate your text. To insert a specific emoji, say its name followed by the word emoji, such as “heart emoji,” “smile face emoji,” or “thumbs up emoji.” Try different emojis to see which ones work with voice (Figures E).
Find out what to ask Siri
One of the many challenges of using Siri is knowing what to say and when to say it. Now ask Siri what to ask, and the answers will vary based on your current app or screen.
To try this, open an app and say, “Hey Siri, what can I do here?” In response, Siri will display questions related to your current app or screen.
This feature only works with certain apps. With unsupported apps, Siri will respond with a list of more general questions (Figure F).
If you found this Siri tutorial immensely helpful, check out our other tutorials: 10 Useful Siri Shortcuts for Business Professionals and how to get Siri to read your messages on your Apple Watch.