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Home / Gadgets / AirPods: Our complete guide to Apple wireless headphones

AirPods: Our complete guide to Apple wireless headphones



Apple's AirPods, first released in 2016, have been considered one of the company's best products in recent years. AirPods offer excellent battery life, mobility, easy charging and unprecedented Bluetooth range.

AirPods are so popular that Apple still has difficulty keeping them temporarily in stock. Two years after the launch, it's not uncommon for you to see a variety of AirPods on the road, in movies, in TV shows, and everywhere else.

If you do not know AirPods, want to buy a pair, or just want to get some new tips, this guide is for you.

What are AirPods?

AirPods are Apple's all-wireless headphones, which look a bit like older Apple EarPods, but without cables. AirPods incorporate Apple-developed technology such as a special wireless chip called W1

, an auditory acceleration sensor, two optical sensors, two Siri beamforming microphones and phone calls, and a second voice recognition accelerometer.


AirPods come with the AirPods Charging Case, which is used for both charging and storage, so AirPods are not lost. The charging case is about the size of a floss container and can therefore easily be put in the pockets. A Lightning connector on the bottom allows the AirPods and housing to be charged with the existing Lightning cables.

How do I set up my AirPods?

One of the best features of AirPods is how easily they can be set up with an Apple device. All you have to do is unlock your iPhone or iPad, open the top of the AirPods Charging Case, hold it near your device, and wait for a pop-up on your iPhone or the iPad screen.

From there, just tap the connect button and the AirPods pair acts like a charm.



AirPods are designed to connect to your iPhone or the iPad when you open the case cover. When you listen to music, you just have to take it out of the case and take it in your ears.

Your AirPods are connected to your iCloud account. Once you pair them with a device, your other devices know they exist. You can change the connection between your devices using the default Bluetooth settings options, with AirPods listed on any device that you are logged in to with your iCloud account.

Other installation instructions: Setting up the new AirPods, a visual guide.

Basic AirPods Tutorials

What are all features of my AirPods?

AirPods have a number of unique features when used on an Apple device, and are designed to work well with all of your Apple products. If you're thinking about AirPods, you should look through this list to know what makes them special.

  • Zero cable
  • Comfortable fit
  • Five hours of battery life
  • 24 hours full life with charging case
  • 3 hours of charging the case in 15 minutes
  • One setting for Apple devices
  • ] Immediate connection to iPhone, iPad Mac or Apple Watch
  • Easy switching between iOS and Mac devices
  • The accelerometer plays music when you plug the AirPods into your ears
  • AirPod pauses music thanks to the accelerometer
  • Only one AirPod can be used for calls or music.
  • Double access to Siri
  • Double tap to switch tracks or play / pause music
  • W1 chip for efficient battery and extended Bluetooth range
  • Microphone for calls and Siri

These are all features that other headphone manufacturers have tried to offer, but they were still not right in that combination. AirPods are still ahead of the competition and are loved almost everywhere by those with Apple devices.

Which devices are compatible with AirPods?

AirPods work with all iPhone, iPad and iPod touch models running iOS 10 or higher. These include the iPhone 5 and later, the iPad mini 2 and newer, the fourth generation iPad and newer, the iPad Air models, all iPad Pro Models and the sixth generation iPod touch .

AirPods work with all Apple Watch models running watchOS 3 or higher, including the original Apple Watch and all subsequent Apple Watchs .

AirPods will work with all Mac models running MacOS Sierra or later, including the MacBook Pro from the end of 2009 or later, the MacBook Pro mid-2010 or later, MacBook Pro, the MacBook Air from the end of 2010, or later the new MacBook Air from mid-2010, the later 2009er or newer iMac, or mid-2010 or later Mac Pro.

With the above listed iPhone, Apple Watch iPad and Mac models, all AirPods features are available. You can pair AirPods with other non-Apple devices. However, you can not use all the bells and whistles.

Using AirPods with your Apple devices

Can I use AirPods with Android devices?

You can use AirPods with Android smartphones and other devices. For instructions, see a handy AirPods guide for Android Use AirPods on Android, the advantages, disadvantages, and features of AirPods on third-party devices.

AirPods are like other Bluetooth headphones and can be connected to any device that supports Bluetooth audio.

Tips and tricks for AirPods

AirPod maintenance and troubleshooting

Other AirPods questions

Are AirPods comfortable and stay in their ears?

Based on reviews, user anecdotes, and our own experiences here MacRumors Most people who own AirPods find them relatively comfortable, even when used over a long period of time.

That is, everyone has ears that are shaped differently, so there are cases where AirPods may not fit well. For example, with small ears, AirPods can fit snugly and be uncomfortable when worn for extended periods.

We have not seen any complaints about AirPods falling off people's ears when used regularly. However, it is worth noting that AirPods are not designed for training and can get along with hard work.

Are AirPods sweatproof?

AirPods unofficially withstand a small amount of moisture without rendering them unusable, but there is no water resistance and they are not meant to be used during training. Future AirPods may be water repellent, but care should be taken with the current version.

Are there any useful AirPods accessories?

There are a number of accessories on the market that you can get for your AirPods, including protective covers, wireless charging bags, and more. Below are some of the best accessories we have found.

  • AirSnap by Twelve South ($ 30) – A handy little leather bag for your AirPods. Includes metal clip to keep them in one pocket
  • HyperJuice Wireless Adapter ($ 20) – The HyperJuice snaps into your AirPods case and lets you charge your AirPods with a Qi wireless charging mat.
  • PowerPod Radio Case ($ 30) – Another radio charging case suitable for the AirPods charging case.
  • Catalyst Waterproof AirPods Case ($ 25) – This silicone case fits over the AirPods charging case and protects it from water or dust. It also contains a carabiner.
  • Airfly by Twelve South ($ 40) – The Airfly is an adapter that lets you use AirPods that typically require wired headphones, such as a pair of AirPods. In gyms or with aircraft entertainment systems. [19659045] Spigen AirPods Strap ($ 8.99) – If for any reason you would like to add a cable to your AirPods, Spigen has covered it with a strap that ties them together.
  • EarBuddyz Ear Hooks ($ 11.95) – If you want to get some earhooks to keep your AirPods in place, EarBuddyz offers a soft silicone option.

How can AirPods be compared to other wireless headphones?

We made a few comparisons with the AirPods against other wireless headphones. Spoiler: The AirPods are popular for a reason and the best wireless headphones we've found for Apple's devices.

Where can I buy AirPods?

AirPods can be purchased from Apple for $ 159, but retailers sometimes buy it at a discounted price. For the best deal on AirPods, read our AirPods Dealguide.

What's next for the AirPods?

Of course, Apple is working on a second generation of AirPods, and you can see all the details in our AirPods rumor summary. We expect a case for wireless charging ("Hey Siri ") to be supported, and possibly even some new health features.

In our overview you can also find out more about the technical details of the AirPods, including the design, their functionality, the internal components and much more.

AirPods Community Discussion

If you have specific questions or would like to discuss AirPods with others in the MacRumors community, visit our iPhone Accessories sub-forum, where many discussions on AirPods take place, including:

Instructions Feedback

Do you know what an AirPod feature means or how you could complete this guide, or do you have a question about AirPods you would like to answer? Write us an email at tips@macrumors.com.


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