The combination of an Android phone and AirPods is not as banned as it seems. If you switch your iPhone to the Android platform, you can still use your AirPods just fine, and if you already have an Android phone, pairing and connecting new AirPods is no problem. Here’s what to do.
Step 1: Check your Android Bluetooth settings
Log into your Android home screen and log in Settings. If you don’t come Settings very often you can just use the All apps screen mode and then the Settings app. If you prefer, you can also open the notification bar and select your account icon to access the settings from there.
In the app, select Connected devicesand then look at the Bluetooth part. Make sure Bluetooth is turned on and ready to locate devices. Then select Bluetooth so you can see all detected and paired devices.
Step 2: Turn on and pair your AirPods
Make sure your AirPods and AirPod case are fully charged before starting. Then bring them close to your Android phone in the case and flip the case back. On the back of each AirPods case you will find a little white Setup button specifically designed to help AirPods connect to non-Apple devices. Press this button while holding the AirPods close to your Android.
Now look at the Available Appliances below Bluetooth on your Android phone and you should see your AirPods appear. Select your AirPods name and they should say To link … while your phone is establishing the connection. Then your AirPods will be added Paired devices, and you’re done! Your AirPods should now play sound from your Android without any problems.
The exception to all of this is the AirPods Max. These over-ear headphones don’t have a dedicated pairing button. Instead, you’ll want to hold down the noise mode button while pairing otherwise everything should work the same.
Step 3: troubleshooting if necessary
Sometimes the link does not work perfectly. If you don’t see the option to connect your AirPods, try turning Bluetooth off and then back on to see if it helps detect the Pods. If that doesn’t work, shut down your phone completely and reboot to try again.
If you have volume issues, please visit Sound settings and check your Medium volume to see if it needs to be adjusted.
Step 4: Add usability with an app
There is one final step that all AirPods users should consider when pairing with Android. While AirPods technically work with Android, they also lose all of their extra functionality. That means you won’t get a battery indicator showing how much charge is left or alerting you when the battery is low. You also can’t use Siri through the AirPods. Features like auto-pause when you take off an AirPod won’t work on your Android either. Both AirPods and AirPods Pro lose their customization options for tapping the pods, which can now only function as a play / pause button.
That’s all very annoying, but luckily there are some workarounds you can implement. One of the most successful is AndroPods. While this extension has in-app purchases to unlock all features, it can add a battery level indicator, ear detection for auto-pause, and taps to enable a voice assistant for commands. You may also want to check out the similar MaterialPods extension which offers similar capabilities. However, this extension can be a bit hit and miss depending on the type of Android phone you have. When looking at apps, we recommend that you take a look at your Android model and limit your search to AirPod apps that have been shown to work well.