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I want the iPhone 15 Pro’s Action button solely for ChatGPT voice

Published Nov 24th, 2023 11:25AM EST
iPhone 15 Pro profile shows the Action button.
Image: Jonathan Geller, BGR

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Before Apple launched the iPhone 15 series, I said I wouldn’t upgrade this year. The iPhone 14 Pro I own can easily last another year, and battery health has never been a problem. After using the iPhone 15 Pros in stores, I concluded I could wait one more year to get a titanium frame, the Action button, and USB-C connectivity.

Fast-forward to mid-November, and a recent ChatGPT voice upgrade made me realize how much I want that Action button. I’m still not going to upgrade, but I’ll miss not being able to use the Action button to open ChatGPT’s voice chat. It’s all because ChatGPT absolutely kills Siri on iPhone, even though it can’t become the default assistant on the handset.

OpenAI announced ChatGPT’s voice capabilities a few weeks ago, but they were available only to ChatGPT Plus subscribers. At the time, I already told you how easy it is to replace Siri with ChatGPT on the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max. All you have to do is set the Action button to activate a shortcut and then use the Shortcut app to select ChatGPT’s voice feature.

The transcript for the voice chat appears immediately in chat history.
The transcript for the voice chat appears immediately in chat history. Image source: Chris Smith, BGR

Just like that, you could use two voice assistants on the handset. You’d still need Siri for commands that concern smart home management and on-device shortcuts and actions (like texting, for example). But ChatGPT’s voice support can completely replace Siri when it comes to answering questions.

ChatGPT Plus users could also hook ChatGPT up to the internet so they could get access to the latest developments. But even without the internet, the free ChatGPT version, which now supports voice chatting, is a great resource.

I showed you how to enable voice support on ChatGPT and how the feature works. In short, all you need to do to talk to ChatGPT via voice is open the app and tap that headphones icon. ChatGPT will talk back to you with one of the voices you’ve selected for it.

The app also supports Live Activities, as conversations can happen even if you exit the app. ChatGPT will stay on until you manually end the conversation.

The entire experience is miles ahead of Siri. I did say that I want Siri on iPhone to get as good as ChatGPT. The OpenAi chatbot understands everything perfectly, it answers immediately, and it provides a transcript of the voice chat instantly.

Action mode: Shortcut.
Action mode: Shortcut. Image source: Apple Inc.

All of that made me realize I’d pair ChatGPT’s voice capability with the iPhone 15 Pro’s Action button in an instant. Or that I will do so with the next iPhone I buy, which will surely feature an Action button. Rumors say that all iPhone 16 models will get the Action button. Furthermore, the iPhone 16 Pros should feature an extra Capture button.

If you don’t have access to ChatGPT Plus and just discovered voice chats, I’ll remind you how easy it is to turn your iPhone 15 Pro’s Action button into a ChatGPT shortcut.

Go to the phone’s Settings app, look for Action Button, and then tap Shortcut. You’ll want to tap on Choose a Shortcut, then look for ChatGPT in the list of apps and choose Start voice conversation. That’s all you need to do.

If you’re the kind of person who wants to add a more complex menu to the Action button, you can do so and still have the ChatGPT voice conversation in it. This post will get you started. You can then determine what the default Action behavior should be and whether ChatGPT voice support deserves that spot.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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