How to show Siri captions for all spoken text on iPhone and iPad

Show Siri captions - hero image

The all-new compact Siri interface, available with iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, renders just a small animated orb at the display bottom along with a compact, banner-style response that slides into view at the top of the screen. That’s an improvement over Siri in earlier iOS version that would take up the whole display. To keep the interface as minimal as possible, Siri in iOS and iPadOS 14 doesn’t show caption for spoken text. Thankfully, you can easily enable Siri captions on an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch with a few simple steps, and we show you how.

In order to keep the interface minimal, Siri in iOS and iPadOS 14 defaults to not showing you captions for spoken text nor does it display a live transcription of what you’ve spoken.

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We already have a dedicate tutorial for how to get Siri to transcribe your requests. And now, we’re going to show you how to enable the option to always show Siri captions for most spoken text. Doing so will help you verify that you’ve heard Siri’s response correctly.

How to show Siri captions on iPhone & iPad

Follow these steps to always show Siri captions for most spoken text in iOS and iPadOS 14:

  1. Open Settings on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Choose Siri & Search from the root list.
  3. Select Siri Feedback.
  4. Toggle on the option Always Show Siri Captions to enable the feature.

Turning this on will “show captions on screen for all Siri dialogue,” per the feature’s description.

The Always Show Siri captions feature enabled in Siri settings
Toggle this on to enable Siri captions for spoken text

Not all Siri dialogue is captionable. Some queries may show full results in a banner-style popup at the top of the screen, with the Siri caption at the bottom only reading as “Here’s your answer” or some such. That’s especially true for web answers from resources like WolframAlpha and other complex queries that would take up too much space if provided as a caption.

A typical Siri query without captions (left) and with captions (right)

If you also turn on the option Always Show Speech in your Siri settings, you will be able to see a live transcription of your request at the screen bottom, which is how Siri worked in iOS 13 and earlier. With both features toggled on (Always Show Siri Captions and Always Show Speech), you’ll be able to see both your own request and Siri’s response as raw text in a small popup right above the animated Siri orb near the bottom of the screen.

Siri transcriptions - example image
Off by default, Siri transcriptions must be enabled manually

50 major new features in iOS 14

For a quick overview of the 50 headline new iPhone and iPod touch features introduced with iOS 14, be sure to watch our hands-on video walkthrough embedded right ahead.

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