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Saying Hello to Siri

Are you ready to start talking to Siri? Siri uses several chimes to let you know whether it’s listening to you. These audio cues help you know Siri’s state. Higher chimes start a session, and lower ones cancel it. To hear this on the iPhone, enable Raise to Speak, raise your phone (turned on, of course) to your ear, and then place it back on a table. The high chimes mean Siri is listening; the low chimes mean it has stopped listening. On the iPod touch or iPad, press and hold the Home button (high chimes) and then tap the Siri microphone (low chimes).

Try the following to start a Siri session. Either raise the phone to your ear or press and hold the Home button. If Siri is already displayed, tap the Siri microphone button.

Say “Hello” and then pause. Siri uses pause detection to know when you’ve stopped speaking. You now hear a second set of chimes—higher-pitched chimes of acknowledgment, in this case—but this time you hear them without moving the phone away from your ear or having to tap the microphone button.

If you have a good Internet connection—a requirement for working with Siri—you’ll hear it respond to you. Siri responds with “Hi” or “Hello,” perhaps adding your name (see Figure 1.8). As you talk, Siri creates a scrolling list of responses so you can review the conversation to date. By default, Siri automatically scrolls up to the most recent response, but to see what has already transpired, pull down on the list.

Figure 1-8

Figure 1-8 Saying hello to Siri.

To summarize, you start talking to Siri in these ways:

  • Pressing and holding the Home button for 1 to 2 seconds
  • Pressing and holding the control button on a wired or wireless headset
  • Pressing the Siri Eyes Free button on your car steering wheel
  • Raising a phone to your ear with Raise to Speak enabled
  • Tapping the Siri microphone button

Siri plays chimes that indicate the state of your interaction. By listening for these chimes, you’ll know how Siri is responding to you:

  • Its higher-pitched “listening” chime (the musically inclined will recognize a C4) lets you know Siri’s ready for you to speak.
  • To finish talking, you can either pause or tap the microphone button. Siri plays a high-pitched “done listening” chime (a higher Abeta.jpg4).
  • If Siri does not hear any input, it stops listening and plays a lower-pitched “cancellation” chime (a lower Abeta.jpg3).
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