Skip to main content

Forget using your thumbs to type out a text message and say goodbye to flicking through your People hub to make a phone call, let your voice do the work for you. Your Nokia Lumia has the power to turn your spoken words into actions, thanks to speech commands.

To let your Nokia Lumia know that you’re ready to speak to it directly, press and hold the Windows start button and your smartphone will be put into listening mode.

Speech listens out for four basic commands: Call; Text; Find; and Open. By starting your voice command with any one of these, your Nokia Lumia will easily be able to help you out.


The Nokia Lumia is capable of populating your People hub with all the people you know through your social networks and any others you may add from other sources. This usually leads to a long list of contacts. To find the right person and to call them in super-quick time, use the Call command. For example, “Call Lisa Miller”. In seconds your phone will be calling Lisa Miller and all you’ve done is ask your phone to do it.

You could even be a little more specific. If the person you want to call has several numbers saved against their name, you can jump right in and say “Call Lisa Miller Work”. This will call her work number. You can also add another command to the end of that sentence and have it dial her using your speakerphone by saying “Call Lisa Miller Speakerphone”.

Speech commands texting

Speech commands composed message


In a similar way from calling, this is a faster way to send somebody in your People hub a quick text message.

Start with the Text command and by saying “Text Lisa Miller”, for example. Your Lumia will find the contact and after a few seconds you’ll be asked to say the message you want to send. It’ll be typed out in front of your eyes. Finish by telling your phone to send.

Speech commands Bing search

Speech commands images


With the Internet at your disposal you can have your Lumia search it for absolutely anything, using your voice. Press and hold the start button and use the Find command.

The Find function uses Bing to bring you search results. This means that if you want to “Find coffee in London”, you’ll be shown a map of London with a list of coffee shops (or just use “Find coffee shops” for anything local to your current position). If you want to know the weather San Francisco, the Web search will show you the current weather, plus the five-day forecast right at the top of the results page.

You can search for anything on the Web using just your voice.

Speech commands listening

Speech commands opening apps


Opening apps is really easy. Using the Open command you can open Nokia Drive, the calendar or your favourite pizza app, for example.

Not only can you open any of the apps you’ve downloaded from Windows Phone Marketplace, but it works for practically anything. You can open the People Hub, Messaging, Internet Explorer or Microsoft Office. If it’s on your phone, you can open it using just your voice.

Powered by Microsoft TellMe, there’s hardly any need to repeat the commands as it gets it 9 times out of ten, regardless of how quiet, gruff or high pitched your voice is.

This feature is already built-in to every Nokia Lumia phone. That means your Nokia Lumia 610, Nokia Lumia 710, Nokia Lumia 800 or Nokia Lumia 900 is already setup to use speech commands.

Do you talk to your Nokia Lumia? Have you used any commands we’ve not mentioned above? Use the comments section below to let us know what you think.

Image credit: CarbonNYC