Using Apple AirPods with an Android phone

(Pocket Ribbon) – While the Apple Watch is still completely tied to just iPhones and iOS, Apple took a different approach with its earbuds and made them compatible with anything with a Bluetooth connection. You still get more of the advanced features like dynamic head tracking, spatial audio, and easy device switching if you have Apple devices, but you can still use them for their essential function.

So yes, it is possible to use Apple AirPods or AirPods Pro with an Android phone like any other pair of Bluetooth earphones.

The pairing process isn’t quite as visually appealing or convenient as using your AirPods Pro with an iPhone, but it’s still simple enough, and once connected you don’t lose too many features. Or at least none of the main ones.

Here’s how to connect your Apple AirPods or AirPods Pro to an Android device and what features they offer.


Connect Apple AirPods or AirPods Pro to your Android phone

Connecting the Apple AirPods to an Android device works the same way as connecting any device via Bluetooth. To pair them, simply follow the instructions in the video above or the steps below:

Open the Bluetooth settings on your Android device. Select Pair a new device. Open the Apple AirPods case to enable pairing. When the AirPods appear on the screen, tap them and confirm the pairing. If they don’t appear, press and hold the button on the back of the AirPods case until the LED light flashes between the AirPods. This will put the AirPods into pairing mode and you can repeat step 4.

Once you’ve completed these steps, your AirPods should be connected to your chosen device and they will continue to connect automatically when you open the case and put it in your ears.

What features do Apple AirPods offer when connected to an Android device?

Once connected, Apple AirPods work the same way as other Bluetooth headphones. You get the following features:

Play and pause by double-tapping an AirPod while it’s in your ear Music and movie audio Call audio Any other audio that would normally play through your phone’s speakers

AirPods Pro are slightly different in functionality, but all the essentials work:

Play and pause music by pressing the AirPod Pro stem once Fast forward by pressing twice quickly Rewind by pressing three times Press and hold the stem to activate/deactivate noise canceling or ambient listening mode

However, unlike when connected to an iPhone, the call sound is not automatically transferred back to your phone when you remove the AirPods from your ears. Likewise, the battery indicator for the AirPods won’t appear on your Android device, so you’ll need to jot down in your head how many hours you’ve been listening so you know when to charge.

Alternatively, there is an app called Assistant Trigger that you can download from the Google Play Store. This will show the AirPods battery on your phone and allow you to double-tap an AirPod to launch Google Assistant or Bixby. So if you want AirPods with your Android phone, there’s nothing stopping you from using them.

However, it may not be the best choice for you. Especially now that more earbuds are rolling out with Google Fast Pair support, including Apple’s own Beats Studio Buds. This means you can quickly pair with the push of a button and a pair of earbuds linked to your Google account that you can connect to from any other Android/Chrome device with that account signed in. You might also be tempted by the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 or Nothing ear 1.

Written by Britta O’Boyle.

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