How to Enable Voice Navigation in Maps on iPhone

Mar 23, 2018 - 25 Comments

Enable Voice Navigation in Maps on iPhone

By default, the Maps app for iPhone will use voice navigation when giving directions. Voice navigation and talking directions is also the standard setting for Google Maps on iPhone too. But sometimes users can accidentally toggle the voice navigation settings off when they didn’t intend to, or forget to turn the voice navigation settings back on if they were disabled at some point.

Not to worry, if you want spoken directions from your mapping applications then this article will show you how to enable (or re-enable) voice navigation directions for both the Apple Maps and Google Maps apps on iPhone.

Wait: Turn Up iPhone volume!

Before anything else, be sure you turn up the iPhone volume on your actual iPhone. Do this by pressing the physical Volume up button on the side of the iPhone repeatedly until the volume is set at maximum level as shown by the on-screen volume indicator.

It’s fairly easy to inadvertently crank the volume all the way down using the physical buttons, and obviously if the device volume is off or down then the voice navigation will not be heard. So before anything else, just make sure the iPhone volume is up all the way and is working as expected.

You’ll also want to make sure the iPhone does not have headphones or anything using the audio port plugged in. Another possibility is that the iPhone is stuck in Headphones mode, although that is fairly rare to occur, and if that happens then all audio won’t come through the normal iPhone speaker in general rather than just in the Maps applications.

Now that you’re assured the iPhone has volume turned up all the way, you can turn to the specific Apple Maps and Google Maps apps to make sure audio is enabled in each of those too.

How to Enable Voice Navigation in Apple Maps on iPhone

If voice navigation and speaking directions are not working with the Apple Maps app on the iPhone, and you already turned the physical volume up all the way, then you may find the voice navigation settings have been turned off or disabled. Here is how you can easily re-enable the voice navigation settings in Apple Maps:

  1. Open the “Settings” app on the iPhone and go to “Maps” settings
  2. Go to the “Driving & Navigation” settings
  3. Look for the “Navigation Voice Volume” setting and choose ‘Loud Volume’, ‘Normal Volume’, or ‘Low Volume’ to re-enable voice navigation in Apple Maps for iOS
  4. Enable voice navigation in Maps for iPhone

  5. Exit out of Settings and get directions from Apple Maps as usual

The key thing with Apple Maps voice navigation settings is to make sure you don’t have “No Voice” set otherwise no matter how loud the volume is on your iPhone, you won’t have voice navigation available.

You can also enable or re-enable voice navigation for directions in Apple Maps directly from the Apple Maps application by swiping up from the bottom of the directions screen and choosing “Audio Settings”

These settings should apply through any directions given by the Apple Maps application, whether you are initiating them through the Apple Maps app directly or even if you’re starting by asking Siri to use voice navigation and turn-by-turn directions on the iPhone.

How to Enable Voice Navigation in Google Maps for iPhone

Google Maps voice navigation settings can be toggled off or on directly within the Google Maps app while giving directions. The settings toggle makes it kind of easy to accidentally turn off or on the voice navigation for directions, so just be sure you have the setting properly enabled if you want to hear voice directions. As before, be sure you turn up the iPhone volume all the way first.

  1. Open Google Maps on iPhone and start directions to any location as usual
  2. Look in the upper-right corner of the Google Maps app for the little speaker icon and tap on that
  3. The voice navigation button in Google Maps for iPhone

  4. Make sure the speaker option is enabled in Google Maps on iPhone
  5. Enable Voice Navigation in Google Maps on iPhone

It’s pretty easy to mute and un-mute voice directions in Google Maps, which is nice if you’re trying to quietly get directions somewhere or you want to temporarily silence spoken navigation to a destination. But that can also mean it’s easy to accidentally toggle, since the audio navigation setting is just on the screen all the time. So just toggle the speaker button in Google Maps for iPhone and you’ll be able to get audio back again.

That should be it, whether you’re using Google Maps or Apple Maps for directions, you now know how to enable or re-enable voice navigation in each app on your iPhone.

Did this help you to get voice navigation and spoken directions working on your iPhone? Do you have another solution or trick for troubleshooting voice navigation not working on iPhone maps apps? Share your comments and experiences below!


Related articles:

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


» Comments RSS Feed

  1. Andrew says:

    It’s black n white / no gray area -while Bluetooth is turned on my iPhone 8 navigation voice remains Silent – as soon as I turn Off Bluetooth – the navigation voice is loud n clear

  2. Andrew says:

    It’s a Bluetooth problem ,my iPhone 8 voice navigation speaks when Bluetooth is turned off,then is silent when Bluetooth is turned on – black n white / Bluetooth on – voice on navigation Does Not work – turn Bluetooth – navigation loud & clear working —— question is WHY ? & how can we get voice navigation to work when Bluetooth is on ? ! ?

  3. Rhonda says:

    Everything else works great on my iPhone 11 except, never have heard a word on maps or google maps. I have done everything you mentioned in the article.

  4. Cynthia Sload Parker says:

    There is no speaker icon on my iPhone in Mapquest. My settings are correct and my volume is on and turned up. The voice directions just randomly how off!

  5. Trudy says:

    Apple Maps start off working fine when I put a destination in. While driving t will go silent and not come back at all! This is very frustrating!!! Thank goodness I had my Husband with me he talked me through the directions. Apple really need to fix this problem.

  6. Marlene says:

    I have an Iphone 7 also with no voice directions, maps show fine, volume up, bluetooth connected nothing else involved there is no icon for speaker on my map either

  7. Taz Miller says:

    Maps voice works fine until you get in car and then silence. All volumes are up . Some say it is a Bluetooth problem. Just need a fix

    • Al G says:

      What I have found is that if you do all this, I was able to get it work as long you were listening to ApplePlay. I did reset my bluetooth connection.

      Since I would prefer to listen to local radio, this doesn’t help me.

  8. Koos Vermeulen says:

    Excellent description. Thanks. I should be ok now!

  9. James says:

    SO I got a new Iphone Xr 128 gb from apple a week ago.

    Switching away from android.

    I went to use maps in my car like I used to use google maps.

    It worked fine.

    Then the next day no voices.

    iphone volume to max.
    car volume to max
    maps settings voice to loudest.

    all other sounds work, cant hear maps voice with bluetooth on or off and all volumes up.

    uninstalled reinstalled maps.

    driving me crazy.

    installed google maps its working great.

    but i would actually like to use apple maps.

  10. Chia says:

    Like a lot of people here I did everything that is asked. It still quiet as the night. No audio.

  11. Jan says:

    As others have said- this advice did not solve my problem. There are clearly other factors not accounted for. Mine works fine until I the car, when I need it. Then, it’s silent as the tomb and I’m fumbling to read it as I drive. Not safe.

    • Eyruh says:

      You must connect your iPhone to your car Bluetooth, then turn up your car speakers audio.

      If the car speaker audio is low or off, the iPhone navigation will be silent too

  12. David Fox says:

    I did everything and can’t find anywhere to enable voice for directions through the car radio. HELP

    • Pab says:

      You have to sync the iPhone to your car stereo Bluetooth, that process is different on every car stereo however

  13. RA XA says:

    Hey Paul ,
    Usely we have here in Europa a special Implement with
    Voice on it and it says the right way where to far left or
    just rights and the Name of the Point. It’s just comfortable and simply to use, but when I‘ll visit my friends in Chicago I‘ll try to drive with 📱!
    Thanks for sharing your great tips and have a fantastic
    Friendly greetings from 🇧🇳

  14. Yvonne huber says:

    Went through prompts with Apple iPhone but was unable to access voice with maps. Have spent time in settings, etc

  15. ian woodroffe says:

    I have voice commands on google maps until I plug the phone in to charge whilst using google maps. Google maps eats the battery so on long journey I need to charge the phone. When I do voice commands go – maddening. Usin Iphone 8

  16. Ross McCorquodale says:

    I still can’t find any way to put navigation audio through the iPhone speaker.

  17. Claire T Gordon says:

    Turn by turn directions work on my iphone 5s until I start my car (2012 Toyota Rav4 with Bluetooth). Car started, no voice. So frustrated. Iv’e tried everything.

  18. Keith Istré says:

    Will this work in TRANSIT MODE also. Tried all suggestions and no go?! I have an iPhone 7 Plus with iOS 12.1.2

  19. M.J. Perry says:

    There is no speaker icon on my Google Maps Display

  20. Kurt Ayers says:

    I want to be able to manually get turn-by-turn updates more often. Even better, by manually asking for them. How can I manually get turn-by-turn direction status? If I want more frequent verbal updates is there a way to manually get directional updates as of that moment?

  21. Ira Markus says:

    When I plug in phone to a USB port in the car there is no sound in turn by turn. As soon as I unplug the phone the sound returns.

  22. partco says:

    the voice in the map can be so useful. especially when we driving. thank you for this article .

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