How to Use Type to Siri on the iPhone and iPad

Sometimes, yelling “Hey Siri” into your iPhone to make a request isn’t entirely appropriate.

Whether in a coffee shop, on a train, or in a library, it’s the 2020s equivalent of shouting “I’m on the train!” into your cellphone while you’re, well, on a train.

To go some way towards remedying this, Apple introduced a feature called Type to Siri.

It has an equivalent feature on Mac computers and is designed to help anyone who is in a situation where they can’t use voice commands or who would prefer to enter their requests by keyboard more generally.

Enable Type to Siri on the iPhone

  • Open the Settings app.
  • Scroll down and tap on Accessibility.
  • Scroll down again and tap on Siri under the General heading.
  • Toggle on “Type to ‌Siri‌.”
Enable 'Type to Siri' in Settings
Enable ‘Type to Siri’ in Settings

Once Type to Siri is enabled, when you press and hold the Side button (or Home button on older iPhones) to activate Siri, an on-screen keyboard is displayed, prompting you to type in your command in a text field.

Type to Siri will process commands in precisely the same way as using speech. So if you type “Do I have any meetings today?” or “Is it going to rain today?” Siri will respond with the same notifications.

Ask Siri using an iPhone keyboard
Ask Siri using an iPhone keyboard

Once Type to Siri has been triggered using the Side or Home button, it’s no longer possible to speak your requests. You must enter your command using the keyboard.

However, you can still say “Hey Siri” as usual. Your device will still respond and process any requests made using the voice trigger.

Siri will also respond when using AirPods, either by tapping an earpiece or saying, “Hey Siri.”

Want to discover more about using Siri, Apple’s popular virtual assistant? We’ve written a helpful collection of tutorials full of techniques for using apps, dictation, using Siri Shortcuts, and a comprehensive beginner’s guide to activating and using Siri.