How to Silence Siri with the Mute Switch on iPhone & iPad

Nov 19, 2015 - 8 Comments

Silence Siri with the Mute Switch

The ever helpful and sometimes comical Siri is a rather vocal virtual assistant, defaulting to speaking back a response to directions and commands. But if you want to hush that Siri voice feedback response while still using the feature for commands and queries, you can enable an optional setting that causes Siri to obey the broader iPhone and iPad hardware mute switch.


Muting Siri with the hardware switch is an easy setting to turn on, but it’s a bit buried and worded a little strange, so don’t be surprised if you overlooked it when wandering around in Settings.

Enable Siri Muting & Unmuting with the Hardware Switch on iPhone & iPad

  1. Open Settings and go to “General” then to “Siri”
  2. Choose “Voice Feedback” and select “Control with Ring Switch” (yes, the Mute switch on the side of the iPhone and iPad is referred to as the ‘Ring Switch’ here, but it’s the mute button you know and love)
  3. Allow mute switch to silence Siri voice feedback

  4. Leave Settings and activate Siri with the mute switch enabled, Siri will respond in text and on screen only, without blabbing the answer to the world

Siri works exactly the same as it did before, but you won’t hear any voice feedback if the mute switch is toggled on, even if you use the Hey Siri command handsfree from afar.

Silence Siri with the Mute Switch

Silence Siri with the Mute Switch

Flipping the Mute switch (or the ring switch, or the silent switch, both of which Apple sometimes calls it) will make Siri completely quiet in responses.

Cancel a timer with Siri

Note that if on iPad you have the mute switch set to orientation lock

Letting Siri Talk Again by Unmuting

Toggling the mute switch again will allow Siri to blab aloud just as you’d expect, perhaps ready to interrupting a press conference or vocalizing opinions and statements out of nowhere again if you’re lucky.

ask-siri-whos-iphone-is-this-identify-lost-iphone-owner

This trick is aimed at a friend of mine who I noticed was actually turning off Siri completely because they didn’t want the voice feedback, a bit overkill and unnecessary if all you want is to read the text on screen rather than having the iPhone or iPad talk back to you. Instead, just enable the switch setting, then you can hush and mute Siri whenever you want, and let Siri talk again when you do want to have voice feedback.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, iPhone, Tips & Tricks

8 Comments

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  1. Phred says:

    Good tip. To date, I disable her for that very reason. Well in some ways I think she is creepy. I was a kid when I watched the movie 2001.

  2. Wharf Xanadu says:

    Hey Siri talks out of the blue and intellects into conversation surprisingly often. Weird little AI thing. I think you see the movies Ex Machina and Her and you see what Siri wants to be!

  3. Linda says:

    I had to shut Siri off because it came on watching videos. It came on every time the commercial came on where the guy starts by saying “Hey Seri” for example. Then it started to just come on whenever it wanted to while watching a show. I love Seri, but only when “I” call him. (Yes, I tuned it to the male voice. Lol)

  4. Phred says:

    Linda… My old Galaxy note had that problem with Voice Talk, but they offred no way to shut it off when it first came out. If I put on Pandora to listen to the radio, the damn thing would open up and try to interpret the song lyrics. Also the bluetooth headset ONLY worked with voice talk. Once they offered a means to disable the voice talk app, the headset could ONLY be used to answer calls. You could not use it if you dialed from the touchpad. That was the reason I threw the damn thing in my sock drawer, and bought an iPhone.

  5. Excellent tip – I applied it immediately because sometimes the last thing thing anyone needs to hear is a loud BEEP…

  6. Rocky Pope says:

    Nice tip. Thanks for posting. I was wonfering the same thing but hadn’t gotten the gumption to try tweaking the settings.

  7. iGman says:

    great many thanks
    however i think i am having an issue
    whenever i press the home button to activate siri, i used to have a sound letting me know that sir will listen. instead i am having a taptic vibration
    sirri will answer to my questions but again even if i press the microphone icon again the sound that siri does will not be made\
    am i doing something wrong??

  8. Jamie LeJeune says:

    This part is simply wrong:
    “Siri works exactly the same as it did before, but you won’t hear any voice feedback if the mute switch is toggled on, even if you use the Hey Siri command handsfree from afar.”

    You can mute Siri when activated by home button, but none of the setting options allow you to mute Siri when using the hands free “Hey Siri” command. Try it, then please correct your article.

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