How to get Siri to correctly pronounce your name or call you something else

Trying to figure out how to get the iPhone 4S's Siri virtual personal assistant to say your name properly? One of Siri's abilities is to learn who you are and refer to you by your first name. However, many of us have names that Siri does not how to pronounce correctly. Or perhaps you don't even want to be called by your real name. For example, Ally likes to go by "Jailbreak Ninja". To get Siri to pronounce your name correctly or call you something else, all you need to do ask. Or you can change the phonetic spellings fields of your contact info.

Ask Siri

  1. Activate Siri by holding down the home button and wait for the beep.
  2. Say "Call me ____" Fill in the blank with whatever you want Siri to refer to you as. This can be your name or anything else.
  3. Siri will reply "From now on, I'll call you ____. OK?
  4. Reply "OK."

Siri will the update the nickname field of your contact info to this name. This is also how your name will appear when Siri types out your name.

Manually update the phonetic spelling of your name

  1. Open Contacts app
  2. Select your name
  3. Tap Edit
  4. Scroll to the bottom and tap "add field"
  5. Tap Phonetic First Name or Phonetic Last Name
  6. Fill out the field with the phonetic spelling of your name
  7. Tap Done

Using this method is best for correct pronunciation of your name, because Siri will still display your name with its correct spelling.

Manually update your nickname

To have Siri call you something other than your name, you can update your nickname manually, and here's how:

  1. Open Contacts app
  2. Select your name
  3. Tap Edit
  4. Scroll to the bottom and tap “add field”
  5. Tap Nickname

  6. Fill in the field with the name you wish to be called.

  7. Tap Done

Using this method will display your name as whatever you typed in the Nickname field.

There you go! Now you're all set to have Siri call you whatever you wish - whether that be the correct pronunciation of your name, or something else.

Please let us know how this tip worked out for you! Is anyone choosing a nickname other than a phonetically spelled version of their first name, like "Master", to be humorous? Let us know in the comments below!

Leanna Lofte

App and Photography Editor at iMore. Mother, wife, and math instructor. Follow her on Twitter @llofte and send her apps to consider for review at iosapps@imore.com

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There are 73 comments. Add yours.

Engelwood says:

You can also just say:
"Siri call me _____"
I've had it calling me "Master of the Universe" and other funny things, but changed it back to my first name recently.

Bazinga says:

I change my girlfriends to call her my favorite pet name for her :)

Margie says:

Siri apparently can't pronounce a hard "g" sound. My name is Margie- like MarGaret. Bummer.

LUVS_ME_SOME_MAC says:

Much to my Girlfriend's chagrin, Siri calls me "Sweet Cheeks".

Justin says:

There is also an option when adding a field to choose "Phonetic First Name" or "Phonetic Last Name". I use this option because it pronounces your name correctly but ignores it when displaying your name.

Dennis says:

Justin... I added my last name phonetically, but when I do that my name is moved in the contact list to what my phonetic name is. It DOES display the spelling of my name correctly, but it places it phonectically. My name begins with an Sc...but I spell it phonetically Sh...and my contact listing moves to the "Sh" listings. Have I done something wrong?

Jhonny Crespo says:

I use the "Siri, call me ____" as well. This way you get Siri's interpretation of the phonetics so you don't have to guess around.

Lol says:

I like it when she calls me big papa. Lol

Lol says:

I like it when she calls me Big Papa. Lol

Pat says:

Whenever I get the 4S, I have to get Siri to call me Dave.

dloveprod says:

After 20 tries I finally got her to say my name right, thanks Leanna.

DeLeon Hughes says:

Thanks! This is a great tip because my name is DeLeon, but the correct pronunciation is "Dell-Le-On".

rj5570 says:

Thank you! Now Siri will be calling me Polish Jedi

AMVMommy says:

Having the same problem with my daughter's name.

Ragatazz says:

Siri calls me Your Majesty

Brian Buehler says:

This is going to be fun when someone leaves their 4S unlocked and alone!

Super Tino says:

Most people will leave the default settings on which is to allow Siri to work even when locked :) So it's going to be fun every time!

dan_es_4 says:

Lol. That's the first thing I told Siri...

Chris Brideaux says:

I don't have the 4S yet, but I would love for SIRI to sound a lot more sexier than she does now. Sheesh....the girl that announces bus stops where I live in Vancouver sounds sexier.

Dean Escueta says:

thats funny... the first thing i told siri to do was to call me master...

HSN AKRAM says:

thers is not phonetic first name in iOS 5.. itsjust first name???? does this works the same??

BiL Castine says:

scroll to the bottom of the contact and add a field.

Ellyn says:

HSN there sure is. Go to the contact hit edit, scroll all the way down, to add field, and there it is.

kirbini says:

I'm trying to decide between "el Jefe" or "el Presidente".
Now if I could only get Siri so finish every sentence with "like a boss"...

Lewis says:

change your first name to like a boss

Mss77 says:

Awesome! Thanks so much for this!! Never knew u could add these fields before!!

Bruab says:

I've been trying this all morning and it's not working -nicknames or phonetic names. I wonder what's wrong?

Martinmuscheid says:

You aren't alone. I have the same issue.

Jed says:

I asked her "How do you know my name?" and she showed me the email info that I had entered.

Karl Katzke says:

My phone seems to sort by phonetic spelling, so when I tried to tell it "pronounce my last name like catski" it filed me under 'C'. Some users might want to beware of that.

claustin says:

I've got a friend named Christ, but it's pronounced like Chris with a T on the end. Haven't figured out how to fix that one.

Maureen Murphy says:

try spelling it like this Krist

Maureen Murphy says:

try spelling it like this Krist

Allie says:

Try phonetic spelling
Krisstee

Sam Flomenberg says:

Apparently, the phonetic first/last name only works for YOUR contact. So if Siri is mispronouncing one of your contacts and you add the phonetic first/last name, it still pronounces it the same.

TDB7297 says:

I can't get Siri to correctly pronounce my name to save my life. My name is Tamara. It rhymes with camera. It pronounces it to like the word tomorrow. I hate that!

Soocool says:

Come u can figure that one out.. Tamera

Martinmuscheid says:

Great job in the detail of your instructions, but Siri mispronounces my surname despite me trying various combinations of phonetic spellings of my name in the phonetic spelling box in the contact area. If I spell it phonetically as the person's surname, she gets it right. i.e. Siri isn''t using phonetic spelling to pronounce names (at least not on my phone). Any suggestions?

Astrongblkwm says:

It worked! She calls me by my Rider (motorcycle) name....Queen;-)

Gareththomas67 says:

Siri now calls me sex god it's as though she knows me

DJP says:

How do you get it to pronounce a surname correctly, and does this carry acrosst to all with the same surname. Mine is Pollard which Siri can't quite get right. Mind you I'm not sure what ir would be. Any suggestions?

Ryan Luff says:

Yeah, whenever I tell Siri to "Text Mom" it asks me if I want it to remember that name is my mother... so obviously it remembers, but wants to confirm? It's happened like 5 times already.

Johnnygallo says:

when i tell Siri to call me by my name (Johnny), she does but then puts the nickname under my sisters's contact info... any ideas???

Johnnygallo says:

when i tell Siri to call me by my name (Johnny), she does but then puts the nickname under my sisters's contact info... any ideas???

sweetin77 says:

Siri has been calling me "work" it must think that's me. How do I change it to "home" that has all of my personal info?

Daniel J Moyles says:

I must be missing something...I have attempted to get Siri to call me by my nickname and all I get is : "I can't make changes to your contacts. You can do it in the contacts app, though." Help!

Rationalist says:

Today I told Siri "Open the pod bay doors." try that.

Wil83liams says:

That was hillarios... Siri really gets offended!

Sommer Cronck says:

Siri now calls me Bitch Face.

Sofia says:

Siri has not been able to pornounce my name or I just do not know the wirte phonetic spelling for it. What is the correct phonetic spelling for Sofia according to you?

Jerry says:

How does someone PORNounce a name? lol!

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Lisa says:

How often does Siri use your name? Thought she would use my name every time I asked her something...for example....Yes Ken it is raining out.
Thanks for all the tips!

Lisa says:

Need to add to my last question. When Siri talks to me...the words type out my name but she doesn't say my name

Christian says:

Just got my iPhone 4S for Christmas and this helped out a lot. Have a few foreign friends whose names were not pronounced correctly. After changing the phonetic spelling of their names, Siri became THAT much more useful and liked. Thanks TiPB!

HZ says:

I have an very odd name in my family. It is spelled Michela (MACHELLA is how it sounds) But when I say "Text Michela" It enters "Machella" into a message and asks who I would like to send it to. I tried entering MACHELLA as the phoenetic first name, but that does not work. Sometimes she gets it right, but pronounces her name Mikayla. HELP

Caroline says:

You can spell out the name to get Siri to text or call the right person. My sister has an odd name that Siri can not understand when I say, but when I spell her name Siri can pronounce it the correct way.
I can not get Siri to pronounce my name correctly- She calls me Carolyn even though my name is spelled Caroline!

Allie says:

Try carruhline as the phonetic spelling.

Alicia says:

I have Siri call me "The Doctor." Makes me giggle every time.

Stephen says:

I asked Siri to call me m'lord, and she replied "ha ha". I thought that was really funny, but when I tried it again to show my daughter, she complied. Strange

Jack says:

I get Siri to call me Siri and he says "Siri, that has a nice ring to it"

hot cam live says:

I tried viewing your site on my iphone and the format does not seem to be correct.

Evette Leskovac says:

I don't have an iPod touch yet (glad I held off) but I've been noticing a severe drop in the quality of LCDs used in Apple products lately.

Marcy says:

I cannot get Siri to call me anything. When I tell her, she looks for a contact and says she doesn't know who that is. Also it does not appear this is a contact for myself in my contact list or a way to add one. Any ideas?

If you know what i mean ;) says:

I put my name as - if you kno what i mean! Bloody halirious!!!

Nik says:

Siri calls me "Your Grace"

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