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For Seniors: All that Siri on the iPhone 4S Can Do

Siri allows you to interact with many apps on your iPhone 4S by voice. You can pose questions or ask to do something like make a call or add an appointment to your calendar, for example. Siri can also search the Internet or use an informational service called Wolfram Alpha to provide information on just about any topic.

Siri knows what app you’re using, though you don’t have to be in an app to make a request involving another app. However, if you are in the Messages app, you can make a statement like, “Tell Susan I’ll be late,” and Siri knows that you want to send a message.

Siri can also take dictation. When you have Siri activated, the onscreen keyboard contains a microphone key you can tap to begin dictation and tap to end dictation. This works in any app that uses the onscreen keyboard.

Siri requires no preset structure for your questions; you can phrase things in several ways. For example, you might say, “Where am I?” to see a map of your current location, or you could say, “What is my current location?” or “What address is this?” and get the same results.

Siri responds to you both verbally and with text information, in a form as with e-mail, or in a graphic display for some items such as maps. When a result appears, you can tap it to make a choice or open a related app.


Siri works with Phone, Music, Messages, Reminders, Calendar, Maps, Mail, Weather, Stocks, Clock, Contacts, Notes, Safari, and the Wolfram Alpha online service.

Note that no matter what kind of action you wish to perform, first press and hold the Home button until Siri opens. Remember this only works with iPhone 4S; for earlier iPhones this would activate Voice Control.

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