How to set up, configure, secure, and start using Siri

Siri is Apple's virtual, personal, digital assistant with a personality straight out of a Pixar film. With Siri, your iPhone or iPad can help you do all sorts of amazing things, from keeping in contact, to keeping on time, to keeping informed. But first, you may need to get Siri set up and up to speed. Follow along for a quick walkthrough on how to get started with Siri!

How to use Siri

Using Siri is simple.

  1. Press and hold the Home button on your iPhone or iPad, or say "Hey, Siri" to activate Siri.y, Siri."
  2. Start speaking your command or question.

How to edit a Siri question or command

If Siri miss-heard you, you made a mistake, or you simply changed your mind, it's easiest to just tap the microphone icon and ask Siri the question or issue the command again. However, if you'd rather edit your original question or command, you can do that too. This trick comes in handy when Siri consistently doesn't understand a proper name or unique word correctly.

  1. Press and hold the Home button on your iPhone or iPad, or say "Hey, Siri" to activate Siri.
  2. Dictate a request.
  3. Tap on the text you spoke in order to edit it.
  4. Make your changes and then tap Done on the bottom right of the keyboard.

How to enable and disable Siri in the Settings app

iOS will typically ask you if you want to enable Siri when you first set up your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, or iPad mini. If Siri isn't already enabled, you can turn it on at any time in Settings. The same goes for disabling it.

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Scroll down and tap Siri.
  3. Either enable or disable Siri by toggling the switch on or off. You'll be asked to confirm you want to enable or disable Siri.

How to configure Siri

You can configure Siri to work in several languages, with or without voice feedback, to know your contact information, and to activate when you say, "Hey Siri."

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Scroll down and tap Siri.

    • Tap Access on Lock Screen to allow access to Siri without unlocking your iPhone.
    • Tap Allow "Hey Siri" to enable the ability to speak, "Hey, Siri" to activate the personal assistant.

    • Tap on Language to change languages and dialects.

    • Tap on Voice Feedback to choose whether Siri always talks back to you, whether Siri only talks when you are in Handsfree mode, or when your iPhone is not set to silence (when the Ring Switch is on).

    • Tap My Info to select your Contact card so Siri knows who you are, what your numbers are, and what your locations are. This lets you say things like "Call home." or "Give me directions to work."

    • Tap App Support to select which apps Siri can integrate with by sending pertinent personal information to Apple to, like your contact information.

How to secure Siri with a Passcode Lock

Since Siri is usually activated by just holding down the Home button, it can pose a security risk to the data on your iPhone or iPad. If you are security conscious and have activated a Passcode Lock for your iPhone or iPad, you may want to make sure Siri isn't allowed to bypass that lock — it's less convenient, but that's always the cost of security.

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on Touch ID & Passcode.

  3. Type in your passcode.
  4. Scroll down to the Allow Access When Locked section and Tap Siri to turn off the ability to use Siri when your iPhone is locked.

How to get more help with Siri

If you still need help with setting up or using Siri with your iPhone Contacts, or any other Siri feature, head on over to our Siri Forum and ask away!

Ally Kazmucha contributed to an earlier version of this article.

Originally published November 2012.

Updated May 2014 to reflect changes in iOS 7.

Updated September 2016 to reflect changes in iOS 10.