Siri apps suggestions not working? Here's the fix!

Siri suggested apps, part of Apple's proactive feature set, is supposed to make it faster and easier to get to the apps you want, when you want them, by placing their icon on the bottom left of the lock screen. Always check Twitter when you wake up? The icon should be there ready and waiting! Listen to podcasts when you jog? Plug in your headphones and its icon should appear. But what happens when it stops working? How to you get your suggestions back?

How suggested apps work

Apple brands proactive app suggestions as 'Siri", since that's what provides the backend intelligence. What happens is, depending on the time of day, your location, and past behavior, Siri will try to predict what apps you may want, and play them at the bottom right of your lock screen. Here's how they work:

  1. If you use Touch ID, place your registered finger on the Home button to unlock.
  2. Touch the app icon at the bottom left of the screen and slide up. (If there's no app icon there, it means there's currently no suggested app, and no handoff app available.)
  3. If you don't use Touch ID, or didn't use it already to unlock your screen, use it now, or enter your passcode to unlock.

So, why wouldn't a suggested app be there?

Continuity apps

The same spot on the lock screen that shows suggested apps also shows continuity apps. Those are apps on your Mac or other iOS device that you can pick up and continue using on this device, right where you left off.

Continuity apps trump suggested apps. So, if your lock screen would typically suggest Facebook, but you're using Safari on your Mac and you reach for your iPhone, it'll show you Safari instead.

If that's what you're seeing, simply stop using the app on your Mac or other iOS device first (click on the desktop or the Home button) and then look and see if the suggested app shows up instead.

Siri App Suggestions widget

Suggested apps on your lock screen are "fed" by the Siri App Suggestions widget. If you've turned off the widget, the lock screen won't be able to pull the app to show you either. So, if you want the functionality on your lock screen, you need to make sure the widget is also enabled.

  1. Swipe from the left bezel to bring up the widget screen.
  2. Scroll all the way to the bottom.
  3. Tap on Edit.
  4. Scroll down to the bottom and tap on Siri App Suggestions to re-enable it.
  5. Tap Done.

If you don't want to see it on your widget screen, just turn it on and pull it down to the bottom so it's out of your way.

Thanks to iMore forum member mhedi and @adamhunteratc for the tip!

Any suggested app questions?

If you have any more questions, drop them in the comments below!

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • I'm a little frustrated with Siri right now. She has hijacked my messaging services. Text, aim, yahoo as well as chrome, google and safari. Every time I text, message or type a web link, Siri speaks the words back to me. I have my phone on silent and have disabled all voice enabled or enhanced apps and have also disabled Siri. Siri over rides everything. Is there a fix for this? Apple doesn't have an answer.
  • It sounds like you have VoiceOver enabled, it's completely unrelated to Siri and reads out things for visually-impaired or blind users. Go to Settings > Accessibility and disable VoiceOver if it's enabled
  • This article was very useful, thank you. I used to plug my headphones into audio jack of my 6S Plus and the screen would lit with the Music app but since I upgraded to iOS10, this no longer worked and I thought that Apple got rid of this functionality for audio jack-gate or whatever. It feels silly to learn that perhaps I turned off this functionality on my own. Either way, I was rather expecting (and looking for it) to find it in Settings and not as a by-product of using a widget.
  • I find this iOS feature to be mostly useless to me. Maybe because I have and use a lot of different apps on my devices, but it's usually just quicker to unlock with my finger print and go directly to the app I intend to use and open it that way. Of course, a lot of that is the fact it's rarely in the Siri suggestion lost anyway.
  • It should be noted that the proactive media playback controls are part of "Siri App Suggestions." I don't use the icon on the bottom-left very often either, but the automatic playback controls when plugging in my headphones or connecting to my bluetooth speaker is one of my favorite features. It's just really convenient to plug in my headphones and have the podcast I've been listening to automatically pop up on the lock screen. When that feature stopped working (apparently at random), I went on a mission to figure it out. It's not very obvious that the lock-screen suggestions are connected to the widget. Apple needs to either cut that connection or make it more obvious, perhaps with a dialog box when you try to disable the widget. Also, Rene credits me with the tip, but I want to make sure iMore Forum user "mhedi" gets credit, as he is the one that told me about this solution.
  • Fixed! And I salute your honor, sir!
  • Rene - I'm probably just not understanding it but you say, "Siri will try to predict what apps you may want, and play them at the bottom RIGHT of your lock screen." Are you sure that's not the bottom LEFT? Or am I missing something that's supposed to be at the bottom right? (You then go on to say "bottom left" in step 2)
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  • Uyiuyyuuiuyu? Uyiuyyuuiuyu!!! Uiu. Posted via the iMore App
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  • How dare you!
  • Thanks! It was useful
  • I have been having problems with Siri since I upgraded to iOs 10.1.1 Siri Suggestions show the same 4 apps (same 8 apps when 'Show More'). I tried everything including hard restarting my phone, resetting network settings, disabling and enabling Siri and Location. Pretty much everything :( Frustrated as I expect my Apple devices to just work.