Last year, when I was planning to fly to Japan with my fiance, we downloaded movies to my iPhone so that we could watch them together on the plane. Shortly before we left, however, we realized that we could not use our AirPods on the same phone. Instead, to share audio, we had to put together a Lightning-to-Headphone Jack Adapter, a cheap headphone splitter from our local pharmacy, and two pairs of Bose headphones that we borrowed from family. They were many cords – and many problems.
Now Apple has a solution for the exact problem we encountered. If you use iOS 1
Do you have these headphones and iPhones?
The first thing to do is find out if you have the right devices. The function is currently limited to the following headphones:
- AirPods Pro
- Powerbeats Pro
- Powerbeats 3
- Beats Solo Pro
- Beats Solo 3 Wireless
- Beats Studio 3 Wireless  BeatsX
According to Apple, you must use iOS or iPadOS 13.1 or higher on one of the following devices to use the function:
- iPhone 8 and higher
- iPad Pro (12.9 inch)) second generation and higher
- iPad Pro (11-inch)
- iPad Pro (10.5-inch)
- iPad (fifth generation and higher)
- iPad Air (third generation)
- iPad mini (fifth generation)
- iPod touch (seventh generation)
Setting up audio sharing
Here's how to set it up. For this manual, I will focus on AirPods, but it should work the same way for other compatible headphones.
- While your AirPods are on, you start playing audio on your iPhone.
- Then tap the icon with the triangle and three circles that should be on the screen near your audio controls. (That icon is also found in the audio playback section of the Control Center and on the audio playback block on your lock screen.)
- In that menu, tap "Share audio …"  From here you can have two options. You can do one of the following:
- Bring your friend's iPhone close to yours, and they will get a pop-up on their device to accept the audio that you share.
- Have your friend put the AirPods in their case and bring the case close to your iPhone. This requires instructions to temporarily pair your friend's AirPods with your iPhone.
That's all! If you are both connected, the host iPhone controls the volume level on both headphones. Each person can also independently control their own audio with the help of their headphones.
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