Starting with macOS Sierra in 2016, Apple introduced support for Siri on the Mac, allowing you to access the personal assistant across all of your Apple devices for the first time.

Siri on Mac can actually do quite a few useful things that aren't available on iOS devices, and because the technology is still rather new on Apple's desktop and laptop machines, we thought we'd highlight some of the most useful Siri commands on the Mac.


Siri on Mac can be accessed from the menu bar, the dedicated Siri app that can be added to the dock, or through a keyboard shortcut like Command + Space. You can manage your Siri preferences and options by opening up System Preferences and choosing "Siri" from the options at the bottom of the window.

asksirimac
One of the simplest and most useful ways to use Siri is to open apps without accessing the dock or finding the app in the applications folder. You can ask Siri to "open the Calendar app" or "open Evernote."

Open works with any app on your Mac, and it also works with websites and files. Some sample commands:

  • Open MacRumors.com
  • Open Google.com
  • Open the Applications Folder
  • Open the iCloud Drive folder

Siri's "Show Me" command on macOS works hand in hand with the series of open commands. You can ask Siri to show you all kinds of files stored on your Mac, which makes it easier to search for specific content. You can also ask for files within apps like Photos. Some sample commands:

  • Show me my most recent files
  • Show me files from June 2017
  • Show me photos from April 2017
  • Show me photos from last week
  • Show me files from today
  • Show me privacy settings
  • Show me network settings

Siri is also interactive and can be used to turn settings on your Mac on and off, just like on iOS devices. Siri can turn on Night Shift, activate Bluetooth, turn off Wi-Fi, and more. Some sample commands:

  • Turn off Wi-Fi
  • Turn on Bluetooth
  • Activate the screensaver
  • Turn up the volume
  • Turn down the brightness
  • Go to sleep
  • Change my wallpaper

Another useful way to use Siri on the Mac is to get information about the Mac itself. You can ask Siri questions about the hardware installed on your Mac. Some sample commands:

  • How fast is my Mac?
  • What processor does my Mac have?
  • Tell me about my Mac
  • What is my Mac's serial number?
  • How much RAM does my Mac have?
  • How much storage do I have?

Siri can, of course, answer simple queries and provide information, just like you can do on iOS. Commands like "What time is it?" and "What's the weather?" are available, as are more complicated requests like "Find me a good restaurant nearby" or "Get me directions to the mall."

Do you use Siri for Mac? What are the most useful commands you've found? Let us know if we've missed any in the comments below.

Top Rated Comments

avanpelt Avatar
54 months ago
I genuinely feel bad for the MR writers who have to write these articles touting 'useful' things that Siri can do. I used Siri on my Mac for about two minutes when it was first introduced. Haven't activated it a single time since then. In my opinion, Siri is even less helpful on the Mac than it is on iOS devices. I have a full-size keyboard and a mouse connected to my Mac. Usually, I can do just about anything Siri could do on a Mac just as fast or faster if I do it myself.
Score: 26 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CLS727 Avatar
54 months ago
most useful command for macOS is:

settings > siri > disable

The ONLY device I actually use voice commands on is the new Apple TV (easier than typing in search terms with that little remote)
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Apple Knowledge Navigator Avatar
54 months ago
The best command is “Turn off Siri”
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CmdrLaForge Avatar
54 months ago
I have deactivated Siri on all my Apple devices. I cannot find it useful at all.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SBlue1 Avatar
54 months ago
The one and only use it is capable of doing on my iPhone is missing entirely on the Mac: setting a timer. :(
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ignatius345 Avatar
54 months ago
Open works with any app on your Mac, and it also works with websites and files. Some sample commands:
* Open MacRumors.com
* Open Google.com
* Open the Applications Folder
* Open the iCloud Drive folder
Obviously this is all a boon for anyone with accessibility issues, but if you've got a full-sized keyboard under your fingers Siri gets a whole lot less useful than it is on iOS.

I can hit ⌘-space and open those URLs in Alfred or even Spotlight faster than you can say them and wait for them to be recognized (especially assuming Siri's less than stellar recognition rate). Hell, Alfred lets you just type a word and start a custom search immediately on any site you have it set up with.

Also, in the Finder ⌘⇧A opens the Applications folder and ⌘⇧I opens the iCloud Drive folder -- both way faster and less irritating than trying to say all that and hope it's recognized.

I guess they don't consider dictation part of Siri, but it can be pretty useful. It's gotten a lot better than it used to be. Again, on a full size keyboard it always seems a little more cumbersome than just typing but I suppose if you're a slow typist or just don't feel like it or have carpel tunnel or something then it's nice to have. (I just dictated this last paragraph and didn't make any manual correctons. Not bad!)
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

home app ios 16

Apple Confirms iPad Will No Longer Be Supported as a Home Hub in iOS 16

Wednesday June 22, 2022 12:38 pm PDT by
The iPad will no longer be able to be used as a home hub following the launch of iOS 16, iPadOS 16, macOS Ventura, and the HomePod 16 software this fall, Apple confirmed today. As discovered in iOS 16 code by MacRumors contributor Steve Moser, Apple says that the iPad will no longer be supported as a home hub. This information will be displayed in the Home app after updating to iOS 16.A home ...
apple ar headset concept 2

Apple CEO Tim Cook Hints at AR/VR Headset: 'Stay Tuned and You'll See What We Have to Offer'

Wednesday June 22, 2022 6:34 pm PDT by
CEO Tim Cook this week did an interview with China Daily, where he once again commented on on the future of augmented reality and hinted at Apple's work on an AR/VR headset. Render via designer Ian Zelbo Cook said that Apple is excited about the opportunities available with augmented reality, which is not too far off from prior comments that he's made, but he went on to say that people should ...
customize wallpaper setting ios 16

iOS 16 Beta 2 Tidbits: New Wallpaper Colors, Backup Over LTE, SMS Filtering and More

Wednesday June 22, 2022 2:16 pm PDT by
Apple today seeded the second betas of iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 to developers for testing purposes, and the new betas introduce new features and refine some of the changes that Apple made with the first iOS 16 release. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Lock Screen Photo Wallpaper Customization When customizing a photo on the Lock Screen, there are two new DuoTone and...
Shazam Music Recognition Control Center

iPhone's Built-In Music Recognition Feature Syncs With Shazam App on iOS 16

Tuesday June 21, 2022 7:37 am PDT by
Since the release of iOS 14.2 in 2020, the iPhone has included a built-in Music Recognition feature in Control Center powered by Shazam. And with iOS 16, and also the iOS 15.6 beta, the feature has received a small but useful upgrade. As noted by Twitter user @someone_andrew, songs identified with Music Recognition in Control Center finally sync with the Shazam app. It also remains...
2022 back to school apple

Apple Launches 2022 Back to School Offer: Up to $150 Gift Card With Mac or iPad

Friday June 24, 2022 5:08 am PDT by
Apple today launched its annual "Back to School" promotion for college/university students in the United States and Canada. This year's promotion offers a free Apple gift card with the purchase of an eligible Mac or iPad, rather than free AirPods like last year. Apple is also offering students 20% off AppleCare+ plans during the promotion. Apple is offering a $150 gift card with the purchase ...
ios 16 lock screen feature2

Apple Seeds Second Betas of iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 to Developers

Wednesday June 22, 2022 10:07 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the second betas of upcoming iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 updates to developers for testing purposes, with the updates coming two weeks after Apple unveiled the new software at WWDC and released the initial betas. Registered developers can download the iOS and iPadOS 16 profiles from the Apple Developer Center, and once installed, the betas will be available over the air. Given...
apple ar headset concept 1

Apple Rumored to Announce 'Game-Changer' AR/VR Headset in January 2023

Friday June 24, 2022 2:52 am PDT by
Apple is "likely" to announce its long-rumored mixed-reality headset as soon as January 2023, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has reiterated. Concept render based on purported leaked information by Ian Zelbo In a detailed post on Medium, Kuo explained that Apple's headset will be a "game-changer" for the augmented-reality and virtual-reality market. Describing some of the headset's...