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‘Hey Siri’ command in iPhone 6s relies on individualized voice recognition

iPhone 6s Hey Siri

Thanks to the iPhone’s new M9 motion coprocessor, iPhone 6s users will no longer have to have their devices plugged in and charging in order to activate the “Hey Siri” command. At last, we can cut the cord!

While this is certainly welcome news, especially for users who enviously took a gander at what “Ok Google” was capable of on some Android devices, an always-on and listening iPhone has understandably raised a few concerns regarding consumer privacy. In addition to questions surrounding data collection and the like, there’s also the practical matter of what happens when an iPhone 6s is an area where people (presumably your friends having fun at your expense) keep on shouting “Hey Siri” to bring your phone to life.

DON’T MISS: Visualized: The iPhone 6s is the biggest ‘S’ upgrade in Apple history

Well as it turns out, Apple has a solution to address this potential issue. Originally relayed by MacRumors, the Hey Siri setup screen in iOS 9.1 suggests that Apple’s voice assistant will be able to discern between different voices, thus ensuring that the Hey Siri prompt is only effective when uttered by a device’s true owner.

“Similar in vein to the way Apple aimed its Touch ID feature to work better and better the more you unlocked an iPhone using the fingerprint scanning sensor,” the report notes, “it seems the set-up process will guide users into stating words or phrases to better acclimate Siri with each iPhone owner.”

Apple has since confirmed to TechCrunch that all Hey Siri prompts will rely upon individualized voice recognition to ensure that only the true owner of the device can activate the software. Additionally, keep in mind that Hey Siri is a feature that’s turned off by default.


A life long Mac user and Apple enthusiast, Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large for over 6 years. His writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and most recently, TUAW. When not writing about and analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions, the most recent examples being The Walking Dead and Broad City.

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