How to Activate Voice Commands on Your iPhone

By M.A. Helt

Updated September 15, 2017

Apple's iPhone built-in voice control allows users to make phone calls and play music by speaking commands rather than navigating the iPhone's buttons and menus. Currently, voice controls work with iPhone 3GS or later if the phone is running the iOS 3.1 or later software. The iPod Touch, starting with the 3rd generation running iOS 3.1 or later, supports voice commands for selecting music. Voice control supports 24 different languages including English, Spanish, French and German and users can speak into the phone's built-in microphone or an external microphone such as a Bluetooth headset or Bluetooth car-kit.

Press and hold the Home button on your phone, or the call button on your Bluetooth headset, until you see the Voice Control screen appear and hear the chime.

Speak your command when the chime stops. To call one of your contacts, say "Call --" followed by your contact's name. Say "Call --" followed by the phone number to call someone not in your contact list. To listen to music, say "Play --" followed by a song title to hear that song or an artist name to play all songs by that artist. If you want to listen to a specific playlist, say "Play playlist --" followed by the name of the playlist.

Listen as the phone repeats the command. If your phone misunderstood your command, press the "Cancel" button. If you do not press "Cancel," the phone will activate the command.