Advanced Siri Tips & Tricks

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by dhy8386, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. dhy8386, Oct 20, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2011

    dhy8386 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 13, 2008
    So I assume everyone has seen all the basic Siri commands at this point and of course the Easter Eggs thread has a lot of the comical responses. The below are a few Siri tips and tricks which I found which go beyond the base commands to leverage what Siri can do to get additional information.

    Search Enhancements
    These are text strings that can be used to search the web and pull back information almost as if it was native to Siri. I am sure there are others but the below i thought were the most useful.

    Sports scores - Siri Command - "Yahoo [Team Name] Score" (i.e. Yahoo Broncos score OR Yahoo Miami Dolphins Score)
    Not only will this show the current score if the game is currently in progress, but it will show the team record, score of the last game, and upcoming game. If Yahoo is your default engine you do not need the "Yahoo" but in my case, Google is my default, and I think Yahoo returns more nicely formatted results.I

    List of Flight Times - Siri Command - "google flights from Airport to Airport" OR "city to city" (i.e. google flights from JFK to LAX OR flights from Boston to Miami)
    This will bring up a list of flight times that day and the associated airline. Useful if you need to quick glance this information before booking.

    Movie Times (and Ticket Purchasing) - Siri Command - "[Movie Name] showtimes [zip code - optional]" - (i.e Ides of March Showtimes OR Moneyball Showtimes 90210)
    If you have set Google in Safari to use your current location, you dont even need to specify an area code. Further, there is Fandango integration so when the list of theaters and showtimes appears, if the theater is on Fandango, you can click the showtime and it directs you to ticket purchasing page for that movie and theater the mobile web version of Fandango. Further bonus is that you can set Fandango to remember your login credentials. So it becomes 3 clicks to purchase tickets (Siri search--Movie Showtimes (click)--Fanango # of ticket purchase (click)--Purchase button (click)

    Opening Applications on Phone
    Many people don't know this but many app developers enable their apps to be opened from other apps or the web using whats called iPhone URL schemes. For example, go into safari and type in the URL box fb:// and hit return. It opens the Facebook app on the iPhone. Or try twitter:// or IMDB:// and you will see it open those apps on your phone directly. I thought this could be potentially useful using Siri in the following way.

    1) Create a Contact in your address book and call it Shortcuts.
    2) Create multiple text fields with these Url schemes. Then you can tell Siri - "Show Shortcuts" and it will pull up that contact sheet and list all the URL shortcuts which can be clicked on.

    Now, doing this just to open an App is probably not useful, but the iPhone URL schemes also support advanced functions in apps which I think could save time. For example, if your enter into a text field: fb://birthdays it will take you directly to the Facebook birthdays page within your Facebook app. Or try fb://albums and you go right to facebook photo albums. Unfortunately, these enhanced URL schemes are hard to find but i figured if people knew about them, the experimenting can begin.

    Here is a link to a partial list of known iPhone URL Schemes:

    Be curious if anyone found other cool Siri tricks.
  2. Bryan Bowler macrumors 68040

    Sep 27, 2008
  3. 100Teraflops macrumors 6502a


    Mar 1, 2011
    Elyria, Ohio

    The url info is very helpful!!
  4. DougFNJ macrumors 65816


    Jan 22, 2008
    Thank you, this is great stuff to know. I was wishing to myself the other day that Siri could do sports scores the way she does the basic commands.
  5. dukeace2094 macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    great post. love the broncos example.

    go tebow! im a huge fan. biggest fan. :D
  6. ap105 macrumors regular

    Mar 17, 2011
    Thanks! this will work fine. until apple implements their movie app and maybe ESPN implements their app to Siri.
  7. Gregintosh macrumors 68000

    Jan 29, 2008
    For some reason literally none of these work.

    Movie times just brings up theaters or asks to do a search.
    Sports scores just asks me to do web search.
    Flight information says "I can't help you with flights"

    I am in Chicago, USA.
  8. dhy8386 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 13, 2008
    I don't need to say search before my text strings but just add that and it should be fine.
  9. iphoneZ macrumors regular

    Jul 15, 2008
  10. dhy8386 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 13, 2008
    Just realized i misunderstood your comment and you misread my post. The whole point is that Siri doesn't do these natively but the search engine companies will give you rich content in their search results instead of just links. Hence if you say "yahoo Texas Rangers score" it will flip from Siri to a mobile yahoo browser showing you the score of the game, formatted with other stats about the Rangers. Its a way to workaround the fact that Siri doesn't do these things but using the rich search results where its almost the same thing. think wolfram alpha results.
  11. heyloo macrumors 6502

    Nov 2, 2006
    Siri tells you flight and airport information

    I figured that I might as well add to an existing thread as opposed to starting a new one, so here it goes.

    The OP posted about Siri's ability to fetch flight information but I recently discovered a new way to go about grabbing the flight information with Siri. My blog post has all the details but I'll transfer over the good bits to the post (a la Forum rules and it's easier for you guys) ;)

    The two commands bring up the arrival/departure information under 3 categories: Arrived Flights, Flights en route, and Scheduled flights for the next 24 hours. As for the Arrived Flights and Flights en route, Siri seemed to pull from the flights closest to your current time – looked to be within 30 mins, and only select number of them too. Perhaps this was because I chose JFK Airport in New York, which is one of the busiest airports in the World.

    You could also check out individual flight information with this command:

    Siri can get a bit buggy after each question and could ask you either to try again with another command or search the web. If she asks you to try again, use the same command again, and she's give it to you. As for searching the web, I don't know if it's a recent change but Siri pulls the information within the Siri Window - all Wolfram-generated. Siri may ask you to 'search the web' several times, but keep tapping on it - she'll give you your flight information.

    Additionally, Siri could show you the flight information for 'tomorrow's' flight out of your favorite airport too ;) Just an interesting tool to check out if you're into traveling.

    Hope some of you found this useful! ;)


    Cheers! :D:apple:
  12. JPstone macrumors newbie

    Jan 16, 2012
    All but one worked for me

    l just got my new 4S yesterday and have been experiment with Siri. I think he/she is great but am surprised at her limited functionality as far as interfacing with app, finding basic information such as sports scores and flight times but at the same time can provide solutions to quadratic equations. The commands listed above worked as stated except for the flights which when I asked Siri to "Google Flights from Los Angeles to New York or LAX to JFK" I always get the response "Sorry JP, I can not help you with flights." I understand that Siri is still Beta but I am gonna be pissed that if in October when the iPhone 5 rolls out they will make me buy that to get the newer, better, more functional Siri. I hope they will offer the Software upgrade like they did with iOS 5 even if its not quit as funtionally the same as the iP 5 itself.
  13. Tom G. macrumors 68020

    Tom G.

    Jun 16, 2009
    Champaign/Urbana Illinois
    All of the above worked for me.

    If you want to find out how to use Siri to the max I suggest a book that is available in iBookstore called Talking to Siri, by Steve Sande and Erica Sadun. It goes into detail about how to use Siri in many different ways.

    One thing that is mentioned in the book is the fact that Siri is available in a lot of apps that you may not be aware of. If you are using an app and note that on the keyboard there is a key with the symbol of a microphone to the left of the space bar, this means that Siri is available to take dictation in that app. You don't need to type. It even takes commands as you type such as "New Line" which act as an enter, or you can put almost any punctuation mark where you want it simply by saying it.

    One piece of advice I would give on using Siri like this is to get a newspaper or book or whatever, and simply read an article into your Notes app or if you have it Pages or some other text app. This will help you get use to using the phraseology needed to get the results your looking for.

    Happy Siri-ing. (a new verb?)

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