How to reset your AirPods and save yourself a trip to the Genius Bar
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- Apple's AirPods are are lightweight, sound great, and are very convenient to use - unless they stop working.
- Instead of booking an appointment at the Genius Bar, you can reset your AirPods to potentially fix connectivity issues.
- The whole process only takes about five minutes, and once you're done, you can easily re-pair the AirPods with your devices.
Few tech problems are as annoying as having a gadget suddenly stop working, but that's especially true of AirPods.
They don't have any buttons, so if they're not connecting or you can only hear music from one earbud, you might think you need to go to an Apple Store to get them fixed.
How to reset your AirPods
First, navigate to your iPhone's Settings app, and tap on Bluetooth. You'll see a list of all the Bluetooth devices that have ever been paired with your iPhone. These devices will show up whether they're connected or disconnected, so if your AirPods aren't connecting to your iPhone at all, they'll still be on the list.
Once you've found them on the list, you need to tap the information icon. It's shaped like a lower case i inside a circle. This will take you to the AirPods' settings, which you can use to customize them, but ignore those features for now.
At the top of the page, you'll see the option to Forget This Device, which will completely disassociate the AirPods from your phone, effectively resetting them. If your AirPods are currently connected to the iPhone, you'll also see the option to disconnect them, but that won't initiate the reset.
A window will pop up letting you know that removing your AirPods from your device will remove them from all of the devices you've previously paired them to. Select Forget Device to continue the reset process.
One thing to note: Un-pairing your AirPods from one device will un-pair it from all of the devices associated with your iCloud account, so they won't auto-connect to your Mac or iPad anymore. Re-pairing AirPods to your iPhone will re-associate them with your iCloud account, and they'll work across your devices again.
How to re-pair your AirPods to your device
Once you've "forgotten" the AirPods, you need to re-pair them with your phone. To do this, put your AirPods inside their case, wait fifteen seconds, hit the pairing button on the back of the case, then open the lid. Your iPhone or iPad screen should light up and display a graphic of the AirPods and their case, asking if you'd like to pair them with your device.
If you click Connect, the AirPods will be reconnected, and you should immediately test them to see whether or not the reset fixed your problem. Keep in mind that a reset means that you're going to need to re-enable any settings that you had previously set up, like your preferred actions when you double-tap each AirPod.
If you're still having the same problem, try turning your Apple device on or off again, and check for new software updates. Problems that persist through a reset point to a hardware issue, which you can only resolve by taking your AirPods into an Apple Store.
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