Siri’s Speak Selection Feature Reads Text Out Loud

By , Dec 13, 2011

Here’s a nice little tip for Siri fanatics. Did you know that you can have Siri speak any selection of text out loud anywhere in iOS 5 on the iPhone 4S?

By enabling a nifty feature in Settings, a simple “Speak” option can be shown any time you select a chunk of text. Siri can then read that text out loud through your iPhone’s speaker at a pre-programmed speed.

If you navigate to Settings, General, Accessibility, and then Speak Selection, you can enable the Siri feature on iOS 5. Once you turn the setting on, you can set the speed that you want Siri to read text back to you.

Siri will give you a test reading very time you move the slider to change the speed. This will let you determine which speed is best for you. I find that placing the slider at about the 20% mark is the best setting for having Siri read back to you at a normal pace. Make sure your iPhone’s speaker volume is turned up high enough so that you can actually hear when Siri reads.

This is a great tip for reading messages in the car or listening to longer emails. Let us know what you use it for in the comments below!

Update: Readers have pointed out that this feature has been around prior to iOS 5 and is available on all iOS devices. Speak Selection works while in Airplane Mode, which proves that this is indeed not a Siri feature. Nevertheless, we thought that it was a helpful tip to highlight again.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Javier-Quinonez/1384658798 Javier Quinonez

    esto si es masiso

    • jose castro

      macizo dude, macizo

  • http://twitter.com/Mdot80 Marc Henn

    You can do that on iPhone 4 too.

    • Anonymous

      yea, this is an ios5 feature not a exclusive to siri enable devices.

  • Carlos Santamarina

    This works with the iPhone 4 as well. I believe it is an iOS 5 feature and may be device independent.

    • Anonymous

      It is, I’ve been using it on my iPod touch and iPad 2 for weeks. (since iOS 5 was out)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E4EDINNU2AVNTEZUCNA2ARYKKU Darrell

    you can do that on the 3gs…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_E4EDINNU2AVNTEZUCNA2ARYKKU Darrell

    you can do that on the 3gs…

  • Anonymous

    As others have said, this was introduced officially with iOS5, as I have it enabled on my iPad and iPhone 4. I dont think it has anything to do with Siri other than sharing the same Accessibility reading voice.

    As is usually the case with official features; a good 12 months or so before iOS5 came out, many of us jailbreakers were using a plugin called iCoz for Ryan Petrich’s awesome ActionMenu which tapped into this inbuilt voice and could read any highlighted text as well.. I actually have both iCoz and the iOs5 native voice enabled, as you can have different speeds and reading voices set for each one. My ActionMenu is getting out of control in size though, so I should really delete one! :)

  • http://twitter.com/iLambboy Shawn Miller

    I use it for reading I download blog well I’m driving

    • http://twitter.com/tamlambboy Tim Guy

      Me to shawn

  • Anonymous

    Wow; thnx for sharing this article. It’s something I’ve wanted for long blogs and articles while I’m driving. Never knew this was available. Thnx again!

  • http://www.facebook.com/harpreethappy29 Harpreet Singh

    i an using this in iphone 4 in io 5 from many days

  • http://twitter.com/kurtlewisart Kurt Lewis

    i knew about this, but you guys gave me some uses for it…thanks~ i maybe use this when i’m walking and can’t read without bumping into a building :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/mehrashish Ashish Mehra

    You can do that on iPhone 4 too.This is an ios5 feature.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ross.ayers1 Ross Ayers

    This is a male voice. Siri is a female voice in my country. This feature works even in Airplane mode with no network connection, so it certainly is NOT Siri.

  • http://twitter.com/oneBurge Burge

    You can get sure to read the last text that you got ..just say read text..

  • Eric Morgan

    nothing to do with Siri. What uninformed fools.
    all credibility is lost.

  • Robert Piller

    thank you for posting this! i was about to waste time and money finding an app that would have made this process much harder.

  • http://twitter.com/angelainjapan Angela Kennewell

    my partner & I use it to listen to news articles while we drive (alone & together!) – love being able to “multitask” when driving instead of just listening to music

  • Mariya Skachko

    i have an iphone 4s. i downloaded the kindle app on my phone and downloaded books from amazon for the kindle app. anyway, im trying to get it to read the books to me but i dont know how. help

  • Rick

    for reading my text messages while I am driving.