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How to activate Siri’s new voices in iOS 14.5

ios 14.5 siri voices
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Siri has been around for almost a decade now, though for most of that time, you've only had a limited number of choices for how the iPhone's digital assistant sounds. That's changing now that iOS 14.5 has arrived.

The new version of Apple's iPhone software introduces a pair of new voices for the American English options. The idea behind the change is to make Siri feel more inclusive, with voices that reflect the broad user base for Apples mobile devices.

These new voice packs are the biggest change to how Apple's digital assistant sounds in almost eight years, since American users first had the option to switch between male and female Siri voices in iOS 7. (British Siri got this option later in iOS 7.1).

First introduced in the iOS 14.5 beta, the new Siri voices are now available to anyone with an iPhone capable of running the update. (As with iOS 14, the iOS 14.5 update works on an iPhone 6s or later — here's how to download iOS 14.5.) And changing Siri voices is as simple as going into Settings and tapping the voice option you're most comfortable with. Here's how to select a new voice for Siri.

How to change Siri's voice in iOS 14.5

Once you've installed iOS 14.5, you only need to take a few steps to swap your Siri's voice. Just keep in mind that this option is only for the American version of Siri, though we'd expect Apple to add additional voice types to other English variations in the future.

1. Launch Settings, and tap Siri & Search.

How to select a Siri voice in iOS 14.5

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

2. From the Siri & Search screen, select Siri Voice.

how to select a siri voice in ios 14.5

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

3. Choose the accent you want by tapping one one of the four options under the Voice section. Voices 2 and 3 are the new additions to iOS 14.5. Voice 1 (male) and Voice 4 (female) are the previous options.

how to select a siri voice in ios 14.5

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

4. When you've found your new voice, select it and wait for it to download.
When the download is complete, you're ready to try out your new Siri voice for real.

Other Siri changes in iOS 14.5

You may not notice if you're upgrading to iOS 14.5 from an existing device, but the new version of Apple's phone software marks the end of Sir defaulting to a female voice. Now, when you set up your iPhone, you'll be prompted to select the voice of your choosing.

Siri voices for Ireland, Italy and Russia have been upgrade to neural text to speech for iOS 14.5, which should make the digital assistant sound more natural in those languages. Apple also says that Siri expands Group FaceTime support with the ability to launch calls with multiple contacts; you can also ask the assistant to start a FaceTime call with any group you've assembled in Messages.

Siri is able to call emergency contacts in iOS 14.5. If you have a pair of compatible Beats headphones or AirPods, Siri can announce incoming calls thanks to the software update. 

Richard Priday

Richard is a Tom's Guide staff writer based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, gaming, audio and whatever else people need advice on. He's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.