iPhone 4S: Shutting Siri Up

I love Siri. But there have been times when I’ve quietly asked her questions only to have her trumpet her response loudly enough to wake the dead. However, you can configure her settings so that doesn’t happen, thank goodness. And I’d like to apologize in advance to any readers who use Siri in a different language—I can’t help referring to her as a female. On the few occasions when I’ve switched her over to a different language, it was like there was a stranger living in my phone. A sexy-voiced French stranger, maybe, but still.

As you may know, there are two methods for triggering an interaction with Siri (assuming your phone isn’t jailbroken and you’re not using a Bluetooth hands-free device). The first way is to press and hold the Home button until you hear Siri’s familiar beeps. The second way can be toggled on or off in Settings > General > Siri; it’s called Raise to Speak

With that on, you can just bring your phone up to your ear (as long as it’s not locked), and Siri will initiate a private conversation between the two of you. Instead of piping her responses out through your iPhone’s speaker, you’ll hear them through the receiver.

A lot of the time, though, the information Siri’s giving you requires you to look at the screen. Depending on how you’ve got her configured, this means that Siri may blast out her responses to your questions, even if you’ve got your iPhone in silent mode. Shush, Siri, geez.

Here’s a solution, though—if you toggle Settings > General > Siri > Voice Feedback to Handsfree Only, Siri won’t talk back to you unless you’re connected through a Bluetooth device or you use Raise to Speak.

You still can’t stop her notification beeps, but everything else will be blessed silence. I love your voice, Siri, but it’s just not cool to hear “HOW ABOUT A WEB SEARCH FOR THAT THING YOU WANTED?!” at max volume. While I’m at a wedding.