Although voice dictation technology lets you send hands-free text messages, it has glaring shortcomings. For example, smart assistants often have trouble understanding you.
That means you’ll have to constantly repeat yourself when the AI doesn’t get what you’re saying. Here are five ways to make your smart assistant understand you better. Here’s another pain point: Smart assistants not sending emojis when you tell them to.
Let’s say you want to dictate an emoji like 😉 or ❤️. Instead of sending the image, your smartphone might spit out the literal text like “winking face” or “red heart emoji.” After this guide, you’ll know how to insert and send emojis on iPhone and Android.
This tech tip will save you from future awkwardness
Let’s say your hands are on the wheel, but you want to send your friend Bob a silly text. You can say, “Siri, send Bob a text that says ‘This traffic stinks’ with a poop emoji!” All you want to do is make your buddy laugh.
But then Siri messes it up. It doesn’t send what you intended: a “This traffic stinks 💩” message. Siri interprets you too literally and sends Bob a text that says, “This traffic stinks with a poop emoji.”
Situations like this can be a thorn in an emoji lover’s side. If you rely on them to get your messages across in text, you’ll want to ensure they show up correctly. After all, emojis are great ways of relaying things that are hard to put into words.
Before we show you how to solve this issue, here’s a quick disclaimer. Certain strings of emojis can be misleading. You might send the wrong message using the incorrect combination of emojis. You must be extra careful about the emojis you send to your coworkers or in-laws.
That’s why we rounded up some of the worst emoji meanings you’ll want to know about. Tap or click here to find out which emojis have shocking x-rated meanings. Use them in the wrong context and you could shock or disturb the people in your life.
Bottom line: Sending emojis through your phone’s voice dictation feature can be tricky. Luckily, we know of a few ways to get the job done.
Send emojis with your voice
The exact steps you need to talk will differ depending on your phone type. That’s why we broke up this guide into two sections: one for iPhone users and the other for people with Androids.
Just make sure that you know the name of the emoji you want to send. If you say the wrong words, like “Smiling emoji” instead of “Happy emoji,” you’ll send a different emoji. To find out the exact name of each emoji, use Emojipedia.
This free online tool is your one-stop shop for all things related to emojis. You’ll see how they look on different phones and their exact names.
Now that you’ve added something new to your toolbelt, here’s how to start verbally inserting emojis into text messages.
How to add emojis to texts using your voice with Siri
You need to have iOS 16 for this trick. Unfortunately, if you have an older iPhone, you won’t be able to use this strategy. After all, iOS 16 isn’t available for people with an iPhone 7 or an older model.
Yep: This update is only available for people with the iPhone 8 or a newer model. Check this list to see if your phone is compatible with the update. If you’re operating on an older OS, you’ll still deal with the emoji-to-text annoyances.
But if you have a newer phone, you’re in luck. You can now send emojis by saying the name of the emoji you want in your text message. This works on any iPhone app that supports Siri voice dictation. Remember to use Emojipedia, so you’re saying the proper emoji name.
If you have a newer iPhone, you can send message effects — including emojis — with the Voice Control feature. Here’s how it works:
- Open your messaging app of choice and select an ongoing message thread or create a new one.
- At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see a Microphone button. Tap it.
- Then, dictate your text. Then, say the emoji you want to insert, like “wink emoji.”
- If you have more to say, keep dictating. If not, tap the Microphone button to end the dictation.
- Then you can send your text.
Apple Support has you covered if you want to see how it looks step-by-step. Watch this video to see how to send message effects on iPhone.
How to send emojis using your voice with Google Assistant on Android
First, you need to turn on Google Assistant’s voice typing feature. It should be on by default, but to make sure, follow these steps:
- Open your Messages app.
- Tap the Gear icon at the top of your keyboard.
- Select Voice typing.
- Then, enable Assistant voice typing.
Now it’s time to learn how to insert emojis into texts using your voice. You can say, “Hey, Google,” to start dictating. Here’s how to use this accessibility feature:
- Open your messaging app of choice, select an ongoing message thread or create a new one. Then open the keyboard.
- Say, “OK Google, type.”
- Start dictating your text and say the name of the emoji you’d like to send.
- Then, say “Stop” when you’re ready to end the message.
After that, send your message. Now that you know how to send emojis with voice dictation, here are a few other tech tips that will make your digital life more manageable.