How to Pair AirPods with Your Macbook

AirPods were originally designed with iPhone in mind. That, however, doesn’t mean that you cannot use it with another Apple product. AirPods are compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and Mac.

When we say Mac, we mean both desktops and laptops. So, if you have a MacBook Air or Macbook Pro, you can easily connect your AirPods with the laptop provided your MacBook has the specified OS version.

The table below will give you a quick idea of the OS version you need on your MacBook to ensure that AirPods work flawlessly.

AirPods VersionmacOS Version
AirPods PromacOS 10.15.1 or later
AirPods – 2nd GenerationmacOS 10.14.4 or later
AirPods – 1st GenerationmacOS Sierra or later

So, if your MacBook has any of the above-mentioned OS versions, it should be compatible with your AirPods (depending on the AirPods version).

Now that you know that AirPods work with MacBook, the question is how to connect AirPods with MacBook? We will find the answer to this question now. Read on!

Pair AirPods with Your Macbook

Activate Your AirPods

Apple always does things differently and AirPods are no different. To activate the AirPods, you need to follow the steps below:

  • Step 1: Make sure that the earbuds are placed inside the charging case. In case there isn’t enough charge, charge the earbuds and the case by placing the earbuds in the case and attaching the case to the charging unit.
  • Step 2: Once the AirPods are charged, open the lid of the charging case. You need to only open the lid. You don’t need to take out the AirPods. Taking out the AirPods will not work at this stage.
  • Step 3: With the lid of the charging case open find the circular white button on the back of the case. It is a small button.
  • Step 4: Once you find the button, simply press and hold it for about three seconds. This will activate the AirPods. You will know this by looking at the LED light inside the case (or outside the case), which will flash with white light. That’s the clue! When the LED turns white and flashes, your AirPods are activated and you can now release the button.

Now that your AirPods are active and ready for pairing with your MacBook, you need to focus on your MacBook.

Open Bluetooth Settings on Your MacBook Air or Macbook Pro

Once your AirPods are active and ready for pairing, complete the following steps on your MacBook to establish a connection (but make sure that the lid of the AirPods case is open and the earbuds are inside the case):

  • Step 1: On the menu bar, click on the Apple icon to pull down the menu.
  • Step 2: Select the second option which reads ‘System Preferences.’
  • Step 3: Clicking on the System Preferences option will open the system preferences window. Locate the Bluetooth option and click on it.
  • Step 4: This will open the Bluetooth window. If the Bluetooth is turned off, you can turn it on by clicking the button on the left which reads ‘Turn Bluetooth On.’
  • Step 5: With Bluetooth turned on, you can find the AirPods listed on the right side of the window. There will be a ‘Connect’ button right next to the AirPods.
  • Step 6: Click on the Connect button and wait until the connection is established.
  • Step 7: On the menu bar, click on the volume control option and select AirPods under the head Output Device. That’s all!

Once the connection is established, you can use the AirPods normally. You can play music or video or even engage in online calls using applications like Skype.

Things You Can and Cannot Do

AirPods were designed with the iPhone in mind. This means that there will be a lot of functions that you cannot use when you connect your AirPods to your MacBook. For instance, you cannot use the noise cancellation feature, and neither can you use the ‘Ear Tip Fit Test.’

You can, however, enable ‘Hey Siri’ if the AirPods support that. Also, if your AirPods are already connected to the iPhone as well, you can still keep using the AirPods for handling phone calls as well even when AirPods are connected with your MacBook.