macOS High Sierra

Use Siri on your Mac

Siri on your Mac can help with everyday tasks, get quick answers and information, play music, and more. For example, Siri can open files and apps, send a message, or make a FaceTime call. You can ask Siri anything—from “Set up a meeting at 9” to “What was the score for last night’s game?” to “Play some mellow music.” Siri is there to help.

The top-right portion of the Mac desktop showing the Siri icon in the menu bar and the Siri window with the request “How many centimeters are in an inch” and the reply (the conversion from Calculator). Click the icon in the bottom-center of the Siri window to make another request.

To ask Siri, click the Siri icon in the menu bar or in the Dock , or use the keyboard shortcut (the default shortcut is to press and hold Command-Space bar). If your Mac has a Touch Bar, tap the Siri icon there.

If you’re not sure what to say when the Siri window appears, ask Siri “What can you do?” or click the Help button in the Siri window.

If the Siri window doesn’t close automatically, you can close it yourself—just swipe right or click the Close button .

Tip: Siri knows your name from your contact card (also called My Card) in the Contacts app. If you added a nickname to your card, Siri uses it. Try it out by asking “What’s my name?”

Ways to use Siri

You can use Siri to get quick answers (say something like “What’s the weather tomorrow?”) or do a task for you, like send an email.

The Siri window showing an email message being dictated.
  • Open an app: Siri immediately opens an app for you. Say something like: “Open Notes.”

  • Dictate text: Have Siri write a note or email for you. Say something like: “Create a note” and then dictate what you want to write.

  • Schedule a meeting: Have Siri set up a meeting for you. Say something like: “Create a meeting for today at 3 p.m.”

  • Play music: When you listen to Apple Music, Siri learns your music preferences and can recommend songs or play a playlist. Say something like: “Play a playlist of happy songs.”

  • Get music trivia: Siri can tell you about songs, albums, and artists, or read album notes for items in your music library. Say something like: “Play the top song from March 1991.”

  • Find a location: When Location Services is enabled in Privacy preferences, Siri can give you information based on your current location or include maps to give you more details. Say something like: “Where’s the nearest grocery store?”

  • Find files: You can complete robust searches for files—just ask Siri to find files created at a certain time or containing precise text. Say something like: “Find files that I created last week containing ‘conference’.”

  • Change a system preference: Siri can automatically change some preferences or open a preference pane for you. Say something like: “Increase my screen brightness” or “Open Night Shift preferences.”

    Tip: Siri is an easy way to start using accessibility features with your Mac—for example, ask Siri to turn VoiceOver on or off.

Siri can make suggestions in some apps even before you ask. For example, when you receive invitations in Mail or book flights in Safari, Siri suggests adding them to your calendar. Or, when you browse webpages, Siri can suggest related webpages.

Use Siri results

You can keep Siri results handy in Notification Center or use them in emails or documents.

  • Pin results to Notification Center: If you see an Add button in the top-right corner of the results, click it to add the results to Today view in Notification Center.

    The results stay pinned and are kept up to date until you remove them. You can pin many types of results, such as stock prices, sports schedules, and more.

  • Open a result: Double-click a webpage to open it in Safari, or double-click a file or document to open it in the appropriate app on your Mac. You can also force click a result to preview it in a Quick Look window.

  • Use or save a result: Drag and drop to add images or locations into an email or document or to the desktop. (You can also copy or paste text.)

    The Siri window showing Siri results to the request “Search the web for images of beaches in Hawaii.” You can pin the results to Notification Center, double-click an image to open the webpage that contains the image, or drag an image into an email or document or to the desktop.

Troubleshoot Siri

If you’re having trouble using Siri, try these solutions:

  • Make sure your Mac is connected to the Internet. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Network.

    Open Network preferences for me

  • Make sure Siri is enabled. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Siri.

    Open Siri preferences for me

  • Make sure your Mac has a microphone and that it’s not obstructed by your clothing or body or other objects.

  • If you’re using an external microphone, check that it’s connected to your Mac and selected in Mic Input in Siri preferences.

    Also check that its input volume is sufficient in Input preferences. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Sound, then click Input).

    Open the Input pane for me

You can customize Siri—for example, change the voice Siri uses or the language Siri speaks. For more information, see Siri preferences.

Siri uses Location Services to provide information, services, and features appropriate to where you are. You can change the setting that allows Siri to do so. For more information, see Manage which apps can detect your location.