How to Use Siri-like Commands on Mac with Dictation Keyword Phrases

Operate your Mac with your tongue as you have done with your iPhone/iPad with the help of Siri. First, set up Dictation on your Mac and then set up OS X’s Dictation Keyword Phrase.

Siri is one of the intelligent tools Apple has fitted into iPhone; now the same intelligence you can use in your Mac. In other words, you can give commands to your Mac and the system will work accordingly following your commands.

That is amazing. Now for some small chores, you don’t have to exert your fingers, just use your tongue and your job is done. Make sure that your Mac is running on OS X El Capitan; note that you won’t get exact results as you get on your iOS device, but you can always experience a feeling like your favorite sci-fi series on TV.

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How to Use Siri-like Commands on Mac

How to Use Siri-like Commands on Mac with Dictation Keyword Phrases

First, set up Dictation on your Mac

Step #1. Click on Apple Menu → Launch System Preferences.

Click on System Preferences in Mac

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Step #2. Click on Dictation & Speech.

Click on Dictation & Speech in Mac System Preferences

Step #3. Click Dictation ON by hitting the Radio button → Also click in the checkbox: Use Enhanced Dictation.

Turn On Dictation on Mac

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Now Set up OS X’s Dictation Keyword Phrase

Step #1. Go back to System Preferences.

Step #2. Click on Accessibility.

Click on Accessibility in Mac System Preferences

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Step #3. Now click on Dictation from the left navigation.

Click on Dictation in Mac System Preferences

Step #4. Click in the check box before: Enable the dictation keyword phrase.

Click on Enable Dictation Keyword Phrase

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The default triggering phrase is “Computer”, which can be changed to any other phrase of your choice.

Step #5. Click on Dictation Commands.

Click on Dictation Commands in Mac System Preferences

Step #6. Finally, click on Enable advanced commands.

Click on Enable Advanced Commands in Mac System Preferences

Real time Usage of Dictation Commands on Mac

After setting up dictation keyword phrase, you can browse the Dictation Commands screen for several phrases you can speak to your Mac. People have got up to 70% success rate triggering these commands; please note that OS X is more familiar with keyword phrases in its default dictionary than other specialty apps. From users’ experience, it is recommended that you enable Play sound when command is recognized check box. Check out some of the popular keyword phrases people ask to their Mac.

“Computer, Start Dictation.”

“Computer, Stop Dictation.”

“Computer, search for The Flash.”

“Computer, search Spotlight for BBEdit.”

“Computer, search for Boston weather.”

“Computer, open result.”

“Computer, Select Text.”

“Computer, Scroll.”

“Computer, find the text “Money”.

“Computer, undo.”

“Computer, switch to Safari.”

“Computer, open BBEdit.”

“Computer, hide Tweetbot.”

“Computer, close window.”

“Computer, quit System Preferences.”

“Computer, how do I find text?”

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Jignesh Padhiyar
Jignesh Padhiyar is the founder of who has a keen eye for news, rumors and all the unusual stuff that happens around iPhone and iPad.


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