How to connect Apple AirPods to MacBook

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Atharva Gosavi
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Apple AirPods is hands down, one of the best pairs of wireless earbuds available in the market. If you're a newbie using them for the first time, the question 'How to connect Apple AirPods to MacBook' might be the first to linger at the back of your head. However, many times, users find their AirPods not connecting to MacBook for various reasons.

No worries, though. You can easily integrate the AirPods by following a few easy ways. We've also compiled a bunch of solutions to apply in case your pair doesn't connect properly to your MacBook or any other product in the Apple ecosystem. 

The pre-requisite

Quite often, users tend to overlook the compatibility of the AirPods and the device they're trying to connect it to. Hence, before we begin, make sure you verify whether the pair of AirPods you have is compatible with your Apple MacBook. 

Once you've identified and verified the criteria, let's take a look at the next steps. 

How to connect Apple AirPods to MacBook 

A pair of white wireless earbuds
Source: Apple/Amazon

Connecting the AirPods to an Apple Macbook Pro or MacBook Air model is child's play. You can accomplish this feat in a few simple steps. 

In this section, we will take a look at how you can connect the Apple AirPods to a MacBook when they aren't already connected or paired with your iPhone. 

1. First and foremost, open the lid of your AirPods case. 

2. Next, press and hold the round button on the back of the case until the status light turns white. You can also press the noise control button if you're using AirPods Max. 

3. Go to your MacBook screen and select Apple Menu. Then, choose System Preferences and click on Bluetooth. 

4. Once the Bluetooth turns on, select the AirPods option from the Devices list and click on the Connect button.

5. Try playing a sound now. If the sound is audible through Mac speakers, click on the Bluetooth menu in the menu bar and make sure you select AirPods as your active output device. 

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These are the steps to follow if you're unaware of how to connect AirPods to MacBook. You need to perform these series of tasks only once after buying a set of AirPods. Once the AirPods are connected, you can take them out of the case and start listening. 

How to connect AirPods to MacBook when they are connected to iPhone

Apple AirPods
Source: Apple/Amazon

An iPhone is the first choice for more than most of the users when it comes to using the AirPods. If you're one amongst the lot, connecting the pair to a MacBook is even easier as compared to the previous way. 

If you have already connected the AirPods to your iPhone, you can easily skip the steps above. Secondly, you also need to make sure both MacBook and Airpods are signed in to the same iCloud account to use this short method. 

1. In this case, the AirPods will be automatically set up on your MacBook Air or MacBook Pro. Click on the Volume button in the menu bar at the top.

2. In the 'Output device' section, click on the AirPods option. 

The AirPods are now ready to be used with the Mac. However, if they still don't connect, you can use the following solutions to resolve the issue.

1. Turn the Bluetooth on and off

If the AirPods are not connecting to MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, you need to switch off Bluetooth and turn it on again. 

Click on the Bluetooth menu in the top bar and select Turn off Bluetooth from the menu. Then, click Turn on Bluetooth. Now, check if your AirPods are working properly.

2. Make sure the AirPods are charged

The Apple AirPods might shut down if they don't have enough power. As a result, they won't show up in the Bluetooth menu. So, make sure they are well-charged to connect them to the MacBook.

3. Set up the AirPods again

Sometimes, the failure in connecting AirPods to the Mac can be attributed to a weak setup.

To resolve the 'AirPods not connecting to MacBook' issue, click on the Apple menu and select System Preferences. Then, choose the Bluetooth option and hover over to the AirPods option. Click on the 'X' mark to disconnect them and pair them again as shown above in this article. 


Connecting Apple AirPods to any Apple MacBook Pro or Air model requires two basic conditions. First, you need to make sure the AirPods are compatible with the MacBook you're using. Second, you need to pair them to the Mac and establish a stable connection between the two devices.

This can be done using any of the two connection methods stated above. If the AirPods don't connect well, there are a bunch of simple solutions you can apply to resolve the connection issue.

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