Headphones

How to pair AirPods with an Android device

Yes, you can use AirPods with something that isn't made by Apple.

Jason Cipriani/CNET

Apple made it easy to pair AirPods ($175.70 at Amazon Marketplace) across all of its devices in a matter of seconds. But just because AirPods are made by Apple and integrated with Apple products, that doesn't mean you can't use them as Bluetooth earbuds with non-Apple devices.

You can pair AirPods to an Android phone, a PC, or your Apple TV with the same Bluetooth pairing method we've grown accustomed to -- and grown to loathe, for that matter.

Jason Cipriani/CNET
  1. Open the Bluetooth settings screen on the device you're going to use your AirPods with.
  2. With the AirPods in the charging case, open the lid.
  3. On the back of the case is a small button, press and hold it for a few seconds.
  4. Once the indicator light between the earbuds begins blinking white, let go.
  5. The AirPods will show up in the pairing menu on your device, select them and follow any prompts.

Naturally, if you aren't using an Apple product you'll lose out on some features. You won't have the simplicity of switching between devices or a battery indicator. But they'll still do the job. When I briefly connected a pair of AirPods to an S7 Edge, a double-tap on either earbud paused and restarted the music.

Repeat this process on each device you want to use the AirPods with. If you run into issues during the pairing process, Apple suggests opening the lid and holding in the button on the back until the indicator light blinks amber. Let go of the button, close the lid, and try again.