I carry an iPhone. On occasion, I will use Siri to send a quick text message to a person, e.g. "Text Alice I'm on my way."

My problem is that Alice has a non-Apple phone and an iPad, and I've used both SMS to communicate with her phone and iMessage to communicate with her on her iPad. If I'm using the Messages app directly, I can pick either the SMS conversation or the iMessage conversation, but if I say "Text Alice," it seems unpredictable which mode of communication Siri will select.

Annoyingly, even if I say "SMS Alice," Siri can choose iMessage. Is there any way to specify which mode I wish to use?

1 Answer 1


For SMS, tell Siri "Text Alice on mobile I'll be right there."

Alternatively, you can set up two different contacts for Alice, one for SMS and one for iMessage and then tell Siri which one to use be citing the different names.

  • This would indeed work, though I'd prefer not to have separate contacts.
    – Mattie
    Mar 26, 2013 at 13:48
  • 1
    In theory you should be able to say "Send a message to Alice on her mobile saying I’ll be late" for SMS and "on her XYZ" for iMessage, but I'm not sure about the value of XYZ.
    – nohillside
    Mar 26, 2013 at 13:53
  • I just suggested an edit after confirming the "on mobile" case works. I don't know what the magic word for iMessage is (if there is one), though; I couldn't discover it.
    – Mattie
    Mar 26, 2013 at 14:46
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    @zigg Does it use the type label in the Contacts app? In which case, it may be "home", "work", something else entirely, or even a completely custom label.
    – SilverWolf
    Dec 4, 2018 at 23:56

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