The iPhone 6s is listening for the Hey Siri command, most of the time

One of the best new features of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, at least for me, has been the new low-power M9 coprocessor thats built directly into the A9 chip. That allows the new handsets to listen for the Hey Siri command even when not connected to a charging cable.

But AppleInsider has recently found that the new iPhones arent always listening. The Hey Siri command doesnt work when your phone is placed face down or in your pocket. The proximity sensor on those models is apparently able to sense whenthose specific things occur.

The same technology also conserves battery life by not displaying any notifications or turning on the screen when a phone is face down.


The M9 coprocessor is integrated directly into the A9 chip of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.

Along with listening for the Siri command, the M9 can track steps, distance, and elevation changes.

On previous devices, you could only use the Hey Siri command if youre iOS device was being charged. Thats because the coprocessor wasnt integrated into the main processor and listening at all times could cause excessive battery drain.

While Apple hasnt previously mentioned this limitation on the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, it definitely makes sense. In a pocket, the microphone could have a difficult time picking up voice commands while placing your iPhone face down is pretty much a universal Do Not Disturb sign.

For other news today, see: New grade book and posting options are now part of iTunes U, The day is finally arriving when you can explore Lumino City, and Prepare to outrun and defeat mythical enemies in Asgard Run.