How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

We put together a simple guide on using Shortcuts in iOS to control your Tesla with Siri.

How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

Key Takeaways

  • iOS Shortcuts and Tesla integration allows for Siri-controlled smart car commands.
  • Users can easily set up shortcuts for Tesla commands in the Shortcuts app.
  • Siri is sensitive to the exact phrasing of command names but can assist in automating tasks.

The Shortcuts app is probably one of the most underutilized features on iOS. Since its launch in 2018, Shortcuts has added a vast array of integrations that I dare say the average iPhone user isn't fully taking advantage of. You can use Shortcuts to automate, streamline, and control any number of things.

How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

Among the many possible and frankly very cool uses of the software is the ability to control many functions on your Tesla vehicle with a series of voice commands, making it that much easier to use an already very smart product. In this guide, we'll walk you through how to combine iOS Shortcuts and your Tesla for the ultimate Siri-controlled smart car.

How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

The basics of iOS shortcuts

Turn your iPhone into an automation powerhouse

In short, the Shortcuts app allows you to take certain simple tasks, such as sending daily greetings, typically performed in various apps or in a series of steps through those same apps, and automate them. The triggers to begin these automations range from the fairly simple to the more complex. Users can trigger automations or actions via a widget visible on their iPhone's home page for quick access, or via Siri voice control activation. On the more complex side, users can set up more detailed 'if, then' statements to start a process after another action, like after hitting snooze on your alarm.

Setting these up is not nearly as complicated as it sounds, particularly since the Tesla app added integrations with the iOS Shortcuts app in the summer of 2023. You need only follow a few simple steps to start controlling some basic commands on your Tesla with Siri.


How to enable Tesla integrations within iOS Shortcuts

Enable Siri support and create shortcuts

  1. Open the Shortcuts app. You should immediately see a section on the page called App Shortcuts, beneath which you'll see all the respective icons and names of apps installed on your phone that are compatible with iOS Shortcuts.
  2. Tap the Tesla app. This will take you to a page of all supported shortcuts on your device.
  3. Tap the information "i" icon. You'll be prompted with two sliders: one titled Spotlight and the other Siri.
  4. Select Siri to enable voice control within Shortcuts.
  5. From the list of available shortcuts, tap on the "+" icon to create a new shortcut or the three dots icon to edit an existing one. Here, you can specify which car it should apply to if you have multiple vehicles associated with your Tesla account. More advanced users can delve into "if, then" conditions within the shortcut's settings for more customized control.

The Shortcuts app is installed by default on all iOS 13 or later devices. If, for some reason, you can't find it, it's possible that you deleted it at some point or hid it from view. If the former is the case, simply download the software again from the Apple App Store .

How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

Using your Tesla Shortcut

Explore the potential of iOS Shortcuts with Tesla integration

If you've granted the appropriate permissions and followed each of the above steps, you should have a fully functioning Siri-controlled Tesla shortcut. A great example of a useful shortcut might be opening your trunk when your hands are full, and you are approaching your car.

Once these shortcuts are set up, they can also be activated by Siri on your Apple Watch. So, whether you are wearing your watch or just holding your phone, you can simply say, "Siri, open Tesla trunk," and your trunk should open without having to fumble through your phone to navigate to the Tesla app.

Users can customize the name of the shortcut, in turn modifying the phrase needed for Siri to begin the process. In my testing, however, I found that Siri is quite sensitive to what you've named your shortcut and isn't that adept at connecting the context of the phrase, even if said exactly right, to the action you programmed.

For instance, it functions smoothly with the phrases "Open Tesla trunk" and "Open the trunk" when I named the shortcut accordingly, but I could not get something like "open Bob's trunk" to work, even if I named the shortcut exactly that. So, it may take some trial and error to get a natural-sounding phrase that you prefer using to work for your shortcut name and command. It should be noted that as of the writing of this guide, many people online report issues getting a "close trunk" command to work properly, though "open" commands work just fine.

How to use Siri Shortcuts with your Tesla

There are far too many neat shortcuts and automations made possible by Tesla's added support for Shortcuts in iOS to go through or name in one article. Tesla owners using iOS are encouraged to explore online forums and play around with the Shortcuts app to uncover tasks or automations they might find useful. Shortcuts can also be added to your home screen as widgets or set as processes to take place after specific inputs have taken place on your iPhone.

One fantastic example is using Shortcuts to turn your climate control on after you have turned off your morning wake-up alarm, ensuring that your Tesla is at the appropriate temperature for your commute by the time you're ready. Teslas are incredibly smart vehicles, and with the added support of iOS Shortcuts, they are just a little bit smarter.

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