When I'm using Siri in one language, Siri can't recognize names in another language.


using Siri in English and asking to play a song whose band's name is in Spanish or French.

Siri understands the first part in English, like "Hey Siri, play a song by..." but then if the band or artist's name is typically pronounced in a French way, Siri doesn't understand and tries to interpret the name as an existing English word and fails.

Is there a specific way to ask Siri for this?

  • 1
    My partner is Hungarian, we live in the UK... I just learned to Anglicise pronunciation of her name & related items so Siri groks it. Easier than trying to teach her any/all "foreign" pronunciations. Put an "H" on Hugo, herb etc etc. [reminds me of the old PG Tips advert from the 70's... "Avez vous un cuppa"] - Siri doesn't hear 'accents' just 'words'.
    – Tetsujin
    Oct 28 '16 at 19:06
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    @Tetsujin Hello! Years later your comment is still the only solution: Siri doesn't hear 'accents' just 'words'. So if Siri is in English, pronounce everything in English, even French/Spanish names. If Siri is in French, pronounce everything in French, etc. Would you like to post an answer please so that I can accept it? :)
    – Eric Aya
    Jun 9 '21 at 0:06

After comments & several years after the original question…

For my own situation, re my partner's 'foreign' name, Siri does actually now know how to pronounce it almost correctly.

It still appears though that if you want Siri to more easily recognise foreign names or words, pronounce them like "an Englishman abroad" - ie just Anglicise it, however badly, & Siri will often make a better guess at what you said.

It really does remind me of the [now terribly un-PC] advert from the 70s
"Avez vous un cuppa?" - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbvq-kZMWIA

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