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Getting to know Siri: Newest feature of the iPhone 4S

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October 23, 2011


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Getting to know Siri: Newest feature of the iPhone 4S

Siri has become very popular as Apple’s main feature in the new iPhone 4S. What is it? It’s a new form of voice recognition software/application that does more than hear what you say, it has the ability to interpret the user’s language and provide you with real and relevant answers. It is probably the best in the market at doing this. While using it thus far, it isn’t completely perfect and it does miss things here and there, but it has allowed me to complete numerous tasks within the phone’s interface from text messaging other contacts easily and making voice calls with absolute precision. Keep in mind that Siri gets more precise through more use. It will pick up and understanding your voice much better than when you first start using Siri.

What it cannot do: Add contacts, add things to your calendar, or open apps. Although it cannot perform these things, it will tell you that it cannot in a very human-like response.

What can it do? Siri performs numerous functions like adding things to your reminders, set up alarm clocks, send out text messages, call people though voice with great precision. If you are every stuck, you can ask Siri, “What can I do?”, and it will reply “You can do things like:” while displaying a list of commands as shown below:

  • Call people from your contacts
  • Play music by suggesting a song
  • Text message your contacts
  • Set up a meeting with Calendar app
  • Remind you to complete tasks on Reminders app
  • Shows you how to get home through maps and directions
  • You can email through voice
  • Find out what the weather is like
  • Find out information about specific stocks
  • Setup the alarm for certain dates and times
  • Find out details of your contacts through voice “What’s Jack’s address?”
  • Take notes with your voice
  • Find out facts through Wolfram-Alpha “How many calories are in a bagel?”

Combining Siri with iOS5 features allows the user to fully engage and take full advantage of the iPhone productivity and efficiency. I would like my favorite features are setting up voice reminders and telling Siri to label my contacts. I can set who my brother, sister, mom, dad, girlfriend are from my contacts, or by any other designation so calling and texting them is easier.

Below are FAQ about Siri that I think you should know:

How do I use Siri?

Using Siri is very simple. Hold the Home button and the Siri interface should pop up at the bottom asking, “How can I help you?”. Speak clearly into the interface and watch or listen to the responses.

Siri says my name wrong, how do I fix that?

For those of us who have difficult names to pronounce phonetically, to correct Siri, tell it to call you a different name that is phonetic to your name.

You: “Call me ‘Your Phonetic Name'”
Siri replies: “From now on, I’ll call  you ‘You Phonetic Name’, OK?”
You: Reply “Yes” or “Cancel”

Fun things to say to Siri

You: “Who are you”
Siri replies: “I’m Siri. But I don’t like talking about myself”

You: “Beam me up Scotty”
Siri replies: “Energizing…”

You: “Who are you?”
Siri replies: “I am Siri. How can I help you.”

You: “Who built you?”
Siri replies: “I, Siri, was designed by Apple in California.”

You: “How are you?”
Siri replies: “I’m fine. Thanks for asking”


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