How to Use Apple AirPods

Introduction

When you take your AirPods out of the case, they're on and ready to use. The following steps will take you through basic usage of your Apple AirPods to help you get familiar with how to operate them.
Removing Apple AirPods from their case.

1 Check Charge

There are actually two batteries to consider when it comes to the Apple AirPods: the AirPods themselves and the case that holds them. Because the AirPods are very small, they aren't capable of holding large batteries. As such, Apple placed a larger battery in the case of the AirPods which is able to rapidly recharge them every time they are inserted into the case.

To check the current charge from your iPhone or iPad screen:

  • Unlock your iPhone or iPad, then hold the AirPods case near it and open the case. A window pops up on the screen showing the amount of battery in the AirPods and the case. The AirPods must be in the case for this to work.
    iOS screen with AirPods battery level display. Screenshot.

To check the current charge from your AirPods' case:

  • Open the case and a green light indicates a full charge. An orange light indicates less than a full charge. If the AirPods are in the case, the light indicates your AirPods' charge. If the case is empty, the light represents the case's charge.
    Battery level indicator within the AirPods case. Illustration.

2 Customize Settings

There is no specific app for controlling your AirPods' settings.

Adjust settings from your mobile device

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, tap Settings.
    iOS device with Settings icon selected. Screenshot.
  2. Then tap Bluetooth.
    Settings screen with Bluetooth selected. Screenshot.
  3. Tap the i icon next to your AirPods in the list of Bluetooth devices.
    Bluetooth device list with i highlighted next to an example bluetooth device. Screenshot.

Change your AirPods' Double-Tap action

  • By default, double tapping the AirPods activates Siri (or answers/ends a phone call). In the Double-Tap on AirPods section, you can also make the double tap play/pause audio or do nothing at all.
    AirPods properties screen with Double-tap on AirPod settings highlighted. Screenshot.
    Left AirPod double-tap settings with Siri, Play Pause, Next Track, Previous Track, and Off options available. Screenshot.

Change the name of your AirPods

  • Tap the Name field. Type in a new name and then tap Done.
    AirPods settings screen with Name highlighted. Screenshot.

Turn off Automatic Ear Detection

  • When Automatic Ear Detection is active, your AirPods recognize if they are in your ears, which will dictate whether or not they receive a signal from your iPhone. Audio will be paused when you take one of the AirPods out of your ear, and it also resumes playing when you put that AirPod back in. To turn this feature off, toggle the Automatic Ear Detection slider switch to the off position.
    AirPod settings screen with Automatic Ear Detection enabled below. Screenshot.

3 Double-Tap Controls

While wearing either AirPod, two quick, sharp taps on the outside of that AirPod will answer a phone call or hang up the phone. Each AirPod can also do one of these:

  • Activate Siri
  • Play and pause your audio content
  • Skip to the next track
  • Go back to the previous track
  • Turn off your audio content

Double tapping an Apple AirPod. Illustration.

4 Use Siri

You can ask Siri to make a phone call, give you directions, or find out if it's going to rain tonight. Siri can also control your music and check on your AirPods. Here are some examples of Siri requests:

  • "Play my Favorites playlist."
  • "Turn up the volume."
  • "How do I get home from here?"
  • "Skip to the next song."
  • "Pause music."
  • "How is the battery on my AirPods?"

By default, two quick, sharp taps on the outside of your AirPods will activate Siri (or answers/ends a phone call).
Double tapping an Apple AirPod. Illustration.

5 Listen with Your AirPods

When you take your AirPods out of the case, they're on and ready to use. When you put them in your ears, your AirPods automatically play the audio from your device. If you take an AirPod out, audio pauses. Take them both out and audio stops.

AirPods can connect to your iPhone and Apple Watch at the same time. If you have both devices, sound will automatically switch between them.
iPhone playing Music over John's AirPods. Screenshot.

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When you take your AirPods out of the case, they're on and ready to use. The following steps will take you through basic usage of your Apple AirPods to help you get familiar with how to operate them.
Removing Apple AirPods from their case.

There are actually two batteries to consider when it comes to the Apple AirPods: the AirPods themselves and the case that holds them. Because the AirPods are very small, they aren't capable of holding large batteries. As such, Apple placed a larger battery in the case of the AirPods which is able to rapidly recharge them every time they are inserted into the case.

To check the current charge from your iPhone or iPad screen:

  • Unlock your iPhone or iPad, then hold the AirPods case near it and open the case. A window pops up on the screen showing the amount of battery in the AirPods and the case. The AirPods must be in the case for this to work.
    iOS screen with AirPods battery level display. Screenshot.

To check the current charge from your AirPods' case:

  • Open the case and a green light indicates a full charge. An orange light indicates less than a full charge. If the AirPods are in the case, the light indicates your AirPods' charge. If the case is empty, the light represents the case's charge.
    Battery level indicator within the AirPods case. Illustration.
There is no specific app for controlling your AirPods' settings.

Adjust settings from your mobile device

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, tap Settings.
    iOS device with Settings icon selected. Screenshot.
  2. Then tap Bluetooth.
    Settings screen with Bluetooth selected. Screenshot.
  3. Tap the i icon next to your AirPods in the list of Bluetooth devices.
    Bluetooth device list with i highlighted next to an example bluetooth device. Screenshot.

Change your AirPods' Double-Tap action

  • By default, double tapping the AirPods activates Siri (or answers/ends a phone call). In the Double-Tap on AirPods section, you can also make the double tap play/pause audio or do nothing at all.
    AirPods properties screen with Double-tap on AirPod settings highlighted. Screenshot.
    Left AirPod double-tap settings with Siri, Play Pause, Next Track, Previous Track, and Off options available. Screenshot.

Change the name of your AirPods

  • Tap the Name field. Type in a new name and then tap Done.
    AirPods settings screen with Name highlighted. Screenshot.

Turn off Automatic Ear Detection

  • When Automatic Ear Detection is active, your AirPods recognize if they are in your ears, which will dictate whether or not they receive a signal from your iPhone. Audio will be paused when you take one of the AirPods out of your ear, and it also resumes playing when you put that AirPod back in. To turn this feature off, toggle the Automatic Ear Detection slider switch to the off position.
    AirPod settings screen with Automatic Ear Detection enabled below. Screenshot.

While wearing either AirPod, two quick, sharp taps on the outside of that AirPod will answer a phone call or hang up the phone. Each AirPod can also do one of these:

  • Activate Siri
  • Play and pause your audio content
  • Skip to the next track
  • Go back to the previous track
  • Turn off your audio content

Double tapping an Apple AirPod. Illustration.

You can ask Siri to make a phone call, give you directions, or find out if it's going to rain tonight. Siri can also control your music and check on your AirPods. Here are some examples of Siri requests:

  • "Play my Favorites playlist."
  • "Turn up the volume."
  • "How do I get home from here?"
  • "Skip to the next song."
  • "Pause music."
  • "How is the battery on my AirPods?"

By default, two quick, sharp taps on the outside of your AirPods will activate Siri (or answers/ends a phone call).
Double tapping an Apple AirPod. Illustration.

When you take your AirPods out of the case, they're on and ready to use. When you put them in your ears, your AirPods automatically play the audio from your device. If you take an AirPod out, audio pauses. Take them both out and audio stops.

AirPods can connect to your iPhone and Apple Watch at the same time. If you have both devices, sound will automatically switch between them.
iPhone playing Music over John's AirPods. Screenshot.

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