What in the world is up with Siri voices? This is becoming annoying real fast!

iOS & iPadOS

First off, two things:

1. Please do not hijack this post saying you have a similar issue, only with your watch.

2. Note that my following comments are based on iOS, *not!* with the issue a lot have experienced on WatchOS. This is on an iPhone, not a watch.

The above 2 things said, this is driving me insane! I'm not one normally for bad-mouthing Apple, but this is flat out becoming adimantly rediculous!

I have an iPhone 10S, (or as some call it, XS; - same thing.)

I normally use the Siri Male American English voice both for Siri, and also as my actual Voiceover voice of choice.

Lately, it seems like inconsistently, totally at random, although it seems to happen more when I either have to restart Voiceover for some stupid reason or another, or if I have to totally reboot my phone, again, for some stupid reason or another, my Siri voice goes ape crap on me and ceases to work. Usually when this happens, I get reverted back to the compact Samantha voice, not even the high quality premium version of Samantha. Trust me, it sounds God aweful in my opinion! OK, it's not Fred by any means, but... LOL!

Usually, at this point when this happens, I go into Voiceover settings, Speech, and under voice, I make sure the Siri male is selected.

Usually it is, even though, when I double tap on it, nothing happens. Usually, for something like this, it's because the voice somehow isn't downloaded. I used my actions rotor but have no choice like, "Download" aside from, "Activate". Obviously though, if I double tap when set to activate, nothing at all happens.

If I flick right one time past the voice name, in this case again, Siri Male, there's absolutely no download button like there would be normally, if the voice for some reason wasn't downloaded.

Sometimes, though rarely, I can reboot the phone by holding the side button, and volume up, then double tapping on slide to power off, waiting a few seconds, then re-powering on the phone, and this will cause the download button beside the voice name to appear. Usually when this happens, I can double tap, redownload the voice, then get it switched until it fiddlefudges again. In fact, just as I was typing this, the download button wasn't there, and now all of a sudden, it just finally after God knows how long of the phone being booted reappeared, and now is redownloading as I type. This is absolutely crazy! I dono what on God's green earth this thing thinks it's doing.

Also, I noticed this happens almost 100 percent of the time when doing an iOS update. For example, when I went from iOS 13.1 to 13.2, it did it, and then just today, when the 13.2.2 update came out, it did it again.

This definitely didn't used to happen before 13.1. Even in just plain 13.0, this didn't happen.

Between that, and the watch having issues, I won't much go there as stated before, but we'll just leave it to say, with this happening on the watch as well in the past, things just seem to be regressing more than getting fixed.

I'm not one to normally complain, but come on Apple! Really? Seriously speaking? This is becoming flat out annoying! Unfortunately, there really isn't much a nicer way I can say it; I wish that there were so, but there isn't.

I just wonder if anyone else on iOS, again, not on Watch OS. That's for another post, please don't hijack this one... but on iOS specifically, has anyone in the last 2 or so updates seen this when trying to use the siri voices either male or female US American English as your Voiceover voice? If so, what did you wind up doing to fix it, if anything?

The odd thing is, I have other voices like Alex, Tom, Ava, Victoria, etc downloaded, and they're not breaking. It's only those 2 Siri voices. I mean, OK, come on here! What gives! I could see it, if this were still in beta cycle, but it's not. I don't wanna switch to Android, but I will if things keep going down hill like this.



Submitted by Blinken223 on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Hey, I found that if you go in Settings, under Emergency SOS, there is a setting called Auto-Dial or Auto-Call, you want to turn this off. This way, if you accidentally trigger SOS, it won't call 911.

Of course when in an emergency, this means you'll have an extra step to take, as when you press and hold the side button and volume button, you'll have to swipe to Emergency SOS and double tap to activate, but at least it's not easily triggered.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I already had done that. You're missing the point. What I'm saying is, when I double tapped the icon to slide/power off, rather than it powering off, it called instead.

Submitted by John on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I hate reading people complaining, and then in the same post saying I didn’t report it to Apple what’s the point. Well there is a point. If you don’t report it you’re part of the problem. Don’t sit back and whine but reported. OK you might not get a personal response. But you were on record as reporting a problem. Let’s say there are 100,000 users. And 500 report a problem. Statistically that’s not very significant. But if 5000 reported that’s a significant number.

So if you are experiencing this or other problems, go ahead now and report it to accessibility. Be part of the solution. Yes I wish Apple would get to these problems faster. But I know they will get to them. But they do prioritize.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

You! need to go back and re-read this thread more carefully, evidently. Had you really red it, you would have seen that the whole point in this forum topic to start with was the fact that we all *have!* reported this many many many times dating all the way back to iOS 13.0. Heck! I even reported a lot of these bugs in iOS 13 beta, before the public even saw iOS, and got nowhere. So before you get on your high horse thinking we're on our soap boxes, maybe try considering that we all have been reporting time after time again and again. How many times must all of us say that up here! And, as for me, I'll continue reporting it over and over, even though, like many, I don't hold my breath any longer. To be honest, I'm a little shocked the editorial team hasn't stopped this thread. I'm trying to be civil here. I know I'm borderlining, and for that I apologize, however, do know, I, and many others actually have reported these things, so you assuming we haven't is totally inaccurate on your part. I'll simply leave it there.

Submitted by John on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

In reply to by Chris Gilland

My apology I did not mean to imply that everybody posting here so they did not report it. In fact I’m one who also posted here earlier and said I had the same problem. But there are people who have sad I’m thinking of one recent post in particular I have not reported it because what’s the point. So I still sit proud on top of my high horse. I’m just trying to say that we all need to report problems we come across. Even if we know someone else As previously reported it.

I reported it again earlier today. It also included my disappointment that no bugs seem to be addressed. That there continues to be plenty of proms with voiceover and accessibility in iOS 13.X.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I also rereported it I believe in 13.2. I don't use siri anym ore as thom is gentler on my ears. For the user who uses uk siri voice I havehad nothingn but issues with it in the us. That was also reported in 13.1 and 13.2.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Same. I was told that they never heard of that problem. That tells you what apple is doing. I am getting tire of those people here that tell you that you need to stop complainingand that apple is doing the best. if I got the phone for free, yes but I pay for it. There are some people here who are brain wash by apple view on accessibility. Microsoft does better job of providing support.

Submitted by John on Thursday, November 21, 2019

I mentioned above that I emailed accessibility again today about this problem and other problems. I heard back from somebody at accessibility. They assured me that they are looking into this problem. I didn’t expect them to say anything else.

I hope as I’m sure you all do that we see some resolutions in iOS 13.3.

Submitted by DJ on Thursday, November 21, 2019

Persistence is the key and so is Oliver Kennett's suggestion.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Friday, November 22, 2019

And, what if I told you, I've followed Oliver's suggestion time after time after time again and again, and haven't gotten anywhere, as have not many others up here.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Friday, November 22, 2019

This morning, I check VO and speech and some how siri male was not in my default. I had to download it and was a major pain. Now shows as my default. See how it will last. Also notice that with iOS 13.2.3 phone gets hot. If is not something is something else. For those people who were defending unlucky iOS 13, even apple is aware that they made a big mistake on how it was created. Maybe iOS 14 be better.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Friday, November 22, 2019

Yesterday, around maybe 11AM eastern, yesterday, I'm saying being Thursday 11/21/2019, I called accessibility and got a lady named Kay. First, she refused to give me her personal e-mail address there at Apple whenever I offered to send her this exact forum page on Applevis. I didn't tell her about all the comments. I simply just said, this is the issue I'm experiencing. I didn't even go at this from the 2nd person standpoint. I did this totally in 1st person... "I..." am having this issue. "I..." would like you to look at this page.

I thought, well, if she sees how many of us here have posted this, then perhaps it'll get some heads turning, and hopefully, Apple will see that this really is an issue, despite them saying no it apparently isn't.

She kept over and over asking me to tell her what the problem was. It's like, "Lady, I've told you at least 3 or 4 times now. What more do you want me to say?" Finally, when I kept offerring politely to send her this page, she said Applevis is a great community, but most of the stuff up there is user based, and 95 percent of the time is nothing more than rumors which are not true. When I kept asking, can you not just create an F Y I, send up to engineers, and have them look at this page, even if you don't yourself, she told me flat out, they're not going to look at an external link outside of the internal resources we have access to, so quit being, her words not mine, a bully! Quit bullying us into doing things against our policies, and trying to back us into a corner. When I apologized saying I'm sorry you feel that way, that's not what I am intending to do at all, she retorted by saying, well, yeah, you should be! I called back in, and got another rep, Adam, and though somewhat more polite, he actually did look at this page. I know he did, as he read a few references to me out loud from it, just to prove he really saw the page. I truly think he did. Although, he had said, Chris, this isn't the way to make noise if that's what you're going at. All engineers are going to do is look at this for 2 seconds, and say, looks like chris created this forum topic to start with simply just to do nothing more than throw a cyber tantrom and complain. When I demanded to speak to his supervisor for that comment, he immediately back down, and stopped being such a jerk about it. He didn't apologize directly, but I think he would have, if I'd kept asking for his manager, which I didn't. I probably should a though, quite frankly. I got off that call though, feeling like between Kay, and then him, like I'm definitely not at all a valued customer... I'm just being brutally honest. People might not like me saying this, but do I have no right to voice my opinion? I mean, seriously? Really speaking?

Chris, my point to the community is simply don't give up no matter how frustrating.

I've spent the last three years pushing a major UK communications company to make sure that with every release of a new broadband hub, the hub manager UI is fully compatible with a computer screen reader. A couple of days ago, the developers confirmed that is the case. If it isn't, I will be contacting them again. This issue was actually raised by someone else back in 2010 on the forum to no avail.

We shell out enough $$ for Apple's products and have every right to expect the company to listen and act upon our concerns within a reasonable time period.

Submitted by Brian Giles on Friday, November 22, 2019

You can disable that in settings. Learned that with the whole VO locking up thing before 13.2.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Friday, November 22, 2019

A note to Brian. If you're talking about that you can disable the dialing S O S thing in Settings so it doesn't do what happened to me after losing the Siri voice when trying to power off by it calling 9 1 1, you're misunderstanding what happened. I think a lot of you actually are misunderstanding. I can't be more clear. Let me try again to explain what happened. Read this carefully, please!

I was navigating around the phone with Voiceover. I don't remember what I was doing specifically, but that's irrellavent anyway.

Voiceover totally quit speaking and crashed. I heard the little Voiceover navigation sounds, but absolutely no speach. So, naturally, knowing what probably would happen, I tripple clicked the side button to disable Voiceover. I then tripple clicked again to turn it back on. Sure enough. Bam! There was yucky old Samantha.

So... I went to reboot the phone. To do this, I pressed at the same time volume up, and the right side button, and held to reach the power off screen. Normally, what should happen here regardless if the 9 1 1 S O S feature is enabled or not is, you'll get a screen with at least the option to slide to power off. If S O S is enabled, you'll also have an emergency button. I think, though I'm not positive, even if you double tapped the emergency button, which I'm not about to test this out, and risk things, but, I think! though don't quote me, even then, it won't yet call. All that will do is offer you the option to call, or to view your medical ID card, if you have that set up in the health app, which in my case, I do.

Anyway, let's not veer off track here.

So, I again hit the side and volume up buttons together to reach the power off screen with those two icons at the least.

Normally, Voiceover at this point should land you at the top of this screen which is slide to power off, button. Then, if you double tap, your phone will shut off.

That isn't however what happened here.

In my case, what it did was, I held down the two buttons, but instead of getting the power off screen with the slide to power off button, etc, it instead just immediately, no countdown, no siren, nothing. It just, bing, bang, boom! called 9 1 1. NO warning, no option to power off, no option first to activate S O S, nothing! And yes, I have that S O S feature in settings totally disabled. That thing's screwed me over too many times.

That's one of the very first things when setting up a new device that I shut off!

So trust me, not having that disabled wasn't the issue. Even had it been, I at least should have gotten the power off screen with the slide to power off, and the S O S button. I didn't even get that.

Literally, I just hit the two buttons, and bam! emergency services were called. NO warning, no countdown, no S O S siron, nothing! Just, push, hold, slight tactile vibrational kick, and boom! calling.

Trust me. As an A T instructor, I can definitely definitely tell you now, that! is ab, suh, lootly! not normal! I hope that's more clear what happened.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Friday, November 22, 2019

There was a reason I call it that, even when the people here got nuts. Now even apple recognize that iOS 13 is crap. Now they are working on setting new way to test iOS updates and it will be use in iOS 14.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Friday, November 22, 2019

For cris, I think you just hit wrong control. I normally just do the soft reboot and be done with it. If you do not know how to do this look it up in this form somewhare or do the following.

Pres and let go of the volume up botton.
Do same iwht volume down
3. Hold power for 20 seconds.,

I do this maybe once a week to clear any cruft that might have gotten in there...

I also would not look at external sources or bring them to my team. It's against policy and even though we know you the user are right, we need to do testing ourselves as we have tools or knowledge you might not have as the regular user. We might even be using builds you are not using such as alpha builds.

This actually happened to me fairly recently.

When powering off VO quit and then for some inexplicable reason emergency services was called. After a brief explanation and an apology, they politely ended the call because I couldn't turn VO back on. There has not been a repeat of this issue since and I have also made sure call with side button and auto call are both turned off.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Friday, November 22, 2019

I find this very odd, did you submit asis diagnose right away to apple? I have not had this issue, but that's probably because I don't turn off my phone the usual way. I use software to do it.

Not on this occasion as I don't believe it's a bug. Although at the time I suspected it might be considering how many updates there have been since iOS 13, but couldn't be certain as I was still getting used to powering off the 11 compared with the 6S and so it's more than likely I caused the issue. If it happens again, I'll submit an assist diagnose.

Submitted by Igna Triay on Saturday, November 23, 2019

i don't remember who posted about the calling apple accessibility and telling them that they should check apple vis and the person got defencive but... damn. If it was me, granted this would be unwise, but i would have said something like, use voiceover for a month... see how it goes when you run into all the bugs... aw well. I guess some people are more receptive than others... kinda sad to hear though. I mean i get applevis is an outside source, but so what? Its not as if it would kill them to come and check it out. On the other hand... the way this person acted in getting defencive and lashing out... that's not good. I mean, it says a lot; unprofessional beeing one of the things here. I mean, you didn't say, check applevis or else. if that had been the case, getting defensive on her part is warranted, but you just suggested it. That's no reason to go all gunho and lash out. This is an uphill battle at best, but if we soldier on, we can make progress

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, November 23, 2019

Would love if the applevis invite Sara to talk about bugs.

Submitted by J.P. on Saturday, November 23, 2019

Honestly, I believe someone received that response. Last few calls with accessibility were lackluster. Reps not very engaged.
While I have a new iPhone 11... I just sold my Mac. I’m buying an upgraded Windows this week. Tired of false promises and accessibility degradation. I’ll speak with my wallet.

Submitted by John on Saturday, November 23, 2019

In reply to by Chris Gilland

Chris, I really think you should escalate this. You shouldn’t be treated that way. Even if they have no intentions of looking here they should treat your comments with concerned and respect. I would suggest calling the normal applecare Support number. And explain that you had a problem with accessibility support that you wish to escalate.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Saturday, November 23, 2019

John, thank you again for your message. I can't go into the specifics of who this person is, basically for confidentiality reasons, however, way back in the days, literally over a decade ago, I had a completely unrelated issue with Apple. to be frankly honest, I don't even have the slightest idea what that issue was regarding. what I do know is, it was quite serious. in that process, of getting things escalated, I was given the phone number as well as direct extension to I'm lady who is really high up in the Cupertino office. I don't exactly know what her job title would be, but I do know that she is very very high up. by no means is she Tim Cook, or back in the days, Steve Jobs, but she is in the main corporate headquarters building, and is very high up. now, some of you might say, you need to tell her about all of these bugs which are going on, and demand that things get fixed. honestly, that's not her job. I don't think that's appropriate. That's up to the engineers and to accessibility.

that however being said, John, rest assured, I immediately did give this lady a call, and I told her exactly what Kay had said. she assured me beyond any doubt that never ever again what I hear any comment like that from that same representative. she was going to deal with that matter first thing the same day.

she called me back, leader yesterday evening, and told me that she had gone through the call log, as she does have that ability, and was able to retrieve a recording of that call specifically. needless to say, she was speechless. she couldn't believe her ears, but sure enough, she said she definitely did hear those comments. so, I don't know what is going to come of that, but, she did assure me that never again would I be treated that way by that particular representative.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Saturday, November 23, 2019

Well that's good. Even if they are not aloud to use external sites, yeah that lady should be fired. And with that i"m off to bed before I druel all over my new keyboard.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Saturday, November 23, 2019

There support is great and they do not mind spending a long time working on your problem. It looks like Microsoft is taking over number one in support for accessibility, amazon second, google third and apple? Apple talk the talk but does not do the walk. The others do the walk but do not need to talk about it. Option says more than words. Apple is going to lose me if this continue.

Submitted by Roxann Pollard on Saturday, November 23, 2019

Hey Chris, I am very glad that you pushed this issue upward to someone who can make a difference. If that rude customer rep looses their job, I am sorry for them, but, having been a rep myself, working for the IRS, no matter how you personally feel about a call, you have no business treating someone like you were. If they can't do their job, they should have fired themselves. Granted, people have bad days at work, but at the very least that rep should have handed your call off to their manager. Here's to hoping that this mess gets sorted out soon and Apple steps their game up.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Saturday, November 23, 2019

I personally feel apple customer service even in stors has gone down hill.. I'm treated ok, but my mom for example goes in there and she is rushed out the door with in about 10 minutes with them just telling her a bunch of nonsense that doesn't make sense about her phone.

Submitted by Victoria F on Friday, November 29, 2019


Unfortunately, I am experiencing the same issue with my iPhone 11 runnning the latest iOS with American Siri female. I have not found a workaround, but I agree that it is annoying. Someone told me they heard directly from Apple that we can no longer use Siri voices for Voiceover, but that is obviously not true.

Submitted by Victoria F on Friday, November 29, 2019

In reply to by Chris Gilland

Sorry Apple is telling you what is a rumour? We were talking about Siri voices, right?

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Friday, November 29, 2019

Yeah, we definitely were talking about the Siri voices breaking. What I was saying was, they told me, when I called them, that my claim of the voices breaking was simply just a rumor. Then, when I tried showing them that wasn't the case, they got defensive with me. As I said before, I got ahold of someone in the Cupertino office. I really can't go into a lot of detail about that, but they told me this bug definitely would be later addressed, and that all the rude remarks I received by that one rep also would definitely be dealt with very harshly.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Friday, November 29, 2019

I think I fix the problem. Using XS and unlucky 13.2.3. I redownloaded male siri and selected him as default and now he is working. Even when I turn VO off or iPhone, he comes back. If you go to voiceover and speech redownload him or her. If it shows it already done, delete him/her and redownload it. I notice that he needed to be downloaded. It took several tries but he is behaving for now.

Submitted by roman on Sunday, December 1, 2019

Hello everyone. So this is happened with me that: I have just updated to iOS 13 Dash 2.3, and always is just went away. But when I started voiceover again, always just came back to me. My God.