Here’s how offline Siri works on iPhone in iOS 15

Bill Mount

One of the subtle but valuable new features with iOS 15 is that Siri works even when offline for some commands. That means faster performance, but offline requests won’t work for everything. Let’s look at what does and doesn’t work with offline Siri in iOS 15. Apple announced the new […]

One of the subtle but valuable new features with iOS 15 is that Siri works even when offline for some commands. That means faster performance, but offline requests won’t work for everything. Let’s look at what does and doesn’t work with offline Siri in iOS 15.

Apple announced the new offline Siri functionality during its WWDC keynote and highlighted some use cases. Since Siri can work without having to communicate with a server, offline Siri commands are faster and more responsive.

Apple also highlighted that audio recorded by Siri won’t leave your iPhone with a new privacy provision and on-device processing launching soon that will be the default.

iOS 15 introduces even more privacy controls to help protect user information. With on-device speech recognition, audio of Siri requests is now processed entirely on iPhone by default, and performance improves significantly.

As for what is functional with the offline Siri, here’s what to expect.

What works with offline Siri in iOS 15?

You don’t need to enable offline Siri in iOS 15; it’s on by default and works with commands like:

  • Opening apps
  • Controlling system settings like dark/light mode, volume, Accessibility features, Airplane mode, Low Power mode, etc.
  • Setting and changing timers and alarms
  • Playing the next or previous song in the Music app

What doesn’t work?

When you’re offline and ask a request Siri can’t help with, you’ll see “I can help with that when you’re connected to the Internet” at the bottom of your screen. Those include:

  • Any requests that call on continually updated info like weather, HomeKit, Reminders, Calendar, etc. or yeah – anything that needs an active internet connection 😅
  • Most specific actions in apps
  • Messages, FaceTime, phone calls
  • Playing music or podcasts – even downloaded content

I was hoping playing downloaded content would work with offline Siri requests, but they’re not as of the first beta. Hopefully, that will change in future betas before the official iOS 15 launch.

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And be sure to check out everything new in iOS 15 in our comprehensive beta review below:

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