You Can Teach Siri How to Pronounce Names Properly

We all have that one friend or family member with a name that sounds nothing like it’s spelled. The one for me that immediately comes to mind is my friend Jordonne – everyone thinks it should sound like JOR-DONE when in fact her parents were just spelling what they wanted to sound like JOR-DAN in a quirky way. Of course, I also have to contend with my own last name (which, by the way, is pronounced EM-EN-I-ZER), but I don’t often need to call myself from my iPhone, so in this case it’s a non-issue. But it can be a pain in the you know what when I want to ask Siri to call my friend Jordonne, because it never recognizes the contact – and so I have to go in manually and look her up in my directory. But now, I can teach Siri just how to pronounce – and recognize the name when I ask her to dial for me.


Here’s how you do it: First, ask Siri to bring up your contact’s information by spelling out their name (rather than just using the pronunciation you know to be correct). Siri will oblige, bringing up the contact information and saying the contact name (wrongly, for now). You then need to let her know that she’s not saying it right by saying “Siri, you pronounced it wrong”. Siri will ask you if you’re both talking about the same person, you will tap “yes”, and then she will ask you for the correct pronunciation. All you need to do from here is give her the appropriate pronunciation, and Siri will respond with a few variants of it (all similar sounding) so you can pick the closest one and voilà – Siri now knows that Jordonne is pronounced Jordan. From here on, whenever you ask Siri to perform a task involving that person, she will know who you’re talking about and pronounce it correctly as well.

Alternatively, you can also correct Siri’s understanding and pronunciation of a name via typing. Simply go into the appropriate contact sheet, down to the ‘add’ field, add the pronunciation option and type your contact’s name phonetically.Additionally, if Siri isn’t pronouncing your own name properly when addressing you, you can ask her “Siri, who am I?” and after she answers say “Siri, you pronounced that wrong” and then go about correcting the issue in one of the two ways explained above.

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