How to Pair AirPods with a PC, Mac, Android Phone, or other Device

Apple’s AirPods pair easily with iPhones, Mac, or iPads because of their W1 chip, yet they are but standard Bluetooth headphones capable of pairing with any device. However, pairing AirPods with any other device is more strenuous compared to the devices afore mentioned, and the connection may not be stable.

How to Pair Your AirPods with a Mac or iPad

If you have paired your AirPods with your iPhone, this pairing status will sync between your iPhone and any iPads and Macs you have on your account. To have this working, you must be signed into the iPad or Mac with the same Apple ID you use on your iPhone. For Macs, you must enable Handoff.

For older Macs that do not support Handoff as well as Apple TVs, you must manually connect them AirPods using Bluetooth.

Once the setup is completely and properly done, select your AirPods like any other audio device from your Mac or iPad. But you must be sure to remove the AirPods from its case because if it’s in a case and the case is closed, it will not be available as an audio device.

On an iPad;

  • Open the Control Center. Tap the audio wave icon at the top right corner of the music controls or long-press the music controls and tap the device switcher icon, and select your AirPods in the list of audio devices.

On a Mac;

  • Click the volume icon on the menu bar and select your AirPods in the list of available devices or head to Apple menu > System Preferences > Sound and choose the AirPods. You can also enable the volume icon on your Mac’s menu bar from here by checking the “Show volume in menu bar” box, if it isn’t already enabled.

Pairing Your AirPods with an Android Phone, Windows PC, Apple TV, or Anything Else

Look on the back of your AirPods case. You’ll see a faint silver circle near the bottom, just above the Lightning port? That’s the “setup button” you need to pair your AirPods with other devices where the W1 chip can’t pair it automatically.

To place your AirPods in pairing mode:

  • Place both your AirPods in the charging case.
  • Open the lid on the case. The light will come on, indicating charging status.
  • Press and hold the circular button on the back of your AirPods case. The light inside the case will begin to blink white. This indicates that your AirPods are in pairing mode.

While the white light is flashing, your AirPods will be “discoverable” just like any other Bluetooth headphones or speakers. For example:

Android: Go to Settings. Tap the “Bluetooth” option under Wireless & networks. If Bluetooth is enabled, you’ll see the AirPods as an available device there.

Windows 10: Head to Settings, then Devices, then Bluetooth & other devices. then, Add Bluetooth or other device, and finally Bluetooth. Select your AirPods in the list of nearby devices.

Windows 7: Go to Control Panel, then Hardware and Sound, then Devices and Printers, then Add a device. From there, choose your AirPods.

Mac: Click the Apple menu and head to System Preferences. Next, click Bluetooth. Select your AirPods in the list and click “Pair”.

Apple TV: Navigate to Settings, click on Remotes and Devices, then click on Bluetooth. Pick your AirPods in the list.

Other Devices with Bluetooth: Go to Bluetooth settings screen where you can view and connect Bluetooth devices. Your AirPods will appear as an option here like any other Bluetooth headphones would.

If you take time to find the Bluetooth options, your AirPods may leave pairing mode and the white blinking light will stop. Press and hold the circular setup button again and your AirPods will re-enter pairing mode and be discoverable to your other devices once again.

As soon as they are connected, your AirPods will function as normal Bluetooth headphones with any device they’re paired to.

How to Reconnect Your AirPods to Your iPhone or iPad

If you pair your AirPods with a non-iOS device, they will disconnect from your iPhone and to use them again with the iPhone, you’ll need to reconnect them.

To do this;

  • Place your AirPods back in their case.
  • Head to your iPhone’s home screen, open the AirPods case, and hold it near your iPhone. This same process works on an iPad, if you want to pair your AirPods with an iPad instead of an iPhone.
  • You’ll see a “Not Your AirPods” message appear on your screen. Tap “Connect.” You’ll then be prompted to press and hold the circular button on the back of the case.
  • Release the button when “Connecting” appears on your screen and they’ll automatically reconnect to your iPhone.

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