Siri: Getting Route Information as You Drive

| TMO Quick Tip

One of the awesome ways that Siri integrates with Apple Maps is that you can ask her for updates on your route as she's giving you turn-by-turn directions. To play along with me for this tip, you'll need to be running iOS 6 on an iPhone 4S/5, an iPad 2 or later, or an iPad mini (and your device must be able to access cellular data to navigate while you're out and about). Got all that? Hooray—let's get started!

First of all, tell Siri where you want to go, and then she'll automatically start turn-by-turn directions. You can do this through the Maps app too, of course, but that just isn't as much fun.

Then as you proceed to drive your way around this wide old world, you can ask Siri about your route, so if (for example) you didn't hear where your next turn is supposed to be, you can get that information without having to take your eyes off the road. Here are some questions you can ask her:

What time will I get there?

How far do I have to go?


What's my next turn?


How far away is my next turn?

If you're as directionally challenged as I am, that last one's a lifesaver. Because, you know, if it has been long enough since I've heard Siri speak, I become convinced that I'm going to miss my turn and wind up in another state or something. Thanks, Siri, for not letting me wind up in another state. Yet.

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Comments

Lee Dronick

Good tips! Siri probably has a lot more buried gems.

Melissa Holt

Thanks, Lee! Yup, I love Siri. :D

wab95

Melissa:

You are a fount of hidden knowledge. I didn’t realise that Siri had that capability. Next time I’m home (or at least somewhere with cellular access on my iPhone), I’ll have to give this a try.

We have SatNav in our Jeep, which works beautifully on and off-road (and which sounds oddly like Molly Bentley on SETI’s ‘Big PIcture Science’ podcast - I’ve been meaning to ask her if it is her voice), so I have not had much occasion to use turn by turn navigation on my iDevices, except for those times when it seems that the car’s SatNav is giving us odd directions.

One thing that SatNav does, which I don’t know if Siri can do, is provide realtime traffic updates with route changes on the fly. It let’s you know that it is updating your route based on incoming traffic information, and then sends you down paths never-before-guessed-at-let-alone-travelled.

Do you know if Siri also provides real-time route updates?

Many thanks!

Melissa Holt

Hey there wab95,

Thank you for the kind words!

According to Apple, Siri does do that. Go to this page:

http://www.apple.com/ios/whats-new/

…and look under the “Turn by Turn” section on Maps. There you’ll see that Apple claims Maps offers alternative routes if traffic conditions change. I haven’t seen that yet in my use of the navigation, but I try very very VERY hard to avoid rush-hour situations. wink

Hope that helps!
Melissa

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