Home Technology Here’s how you can quickly connect AirPods to Mac

Here’s how you can quickly connect AirPods to Mac

When you purchase through our sponsored links, we may earn a commission. By using this website you agree to our T&Cs.

Apple AirPods are among the most popular wireless earphones. One normally associates AirPods with the iPhones, but they are just as useful with an iPad, iPod Touch and Mac as with an iPhone. Yes, you heard it right; you can pair it with your MacBook as well. Moreover, it is very easy to connect AirPods to Mac.

How to connect AirPods to Mac

There are usually two scenarios to connect AirPods to Mac. First, when you have already paired the AirPods with your iPhone, and second, when you are pairing AirPods for the first time with any Apple device.

If you have already paired your AirPods with your iPhone, then it is very easy to connect AirPods to Mac. In fact, in such a case, you won’t have to do anything to connect your AirPods to Mac. It will automatically pair with the Mac. There is, however, one requirement that you need to ensure. Your Mac must be signed into iCloud with the same Apple ID as the iPhone.

If you meet this condition, then you are good to go. To check if AirPods are connected to Mac, follow the below steps:

First, put the AirPods into your ears and turn them on. Also, turn on your Mac.

Second, once the Mac is up, go to the menu bar at the top right of the screen. Here you will see all the active connections and your Mac settings. Now, select the Bluetooth setting, which is represented by a small Bluetooth signal.

Third, in the Bluetooth setting, look for the AirPod’s name in the dropdown list. If its name is there, it will mean that your Mac has already recognized your AirPods.

Fourth, select them, and try to play any music. Once AirPods connect, you should hear a chime sound, followed by MacOS sounds.

That’s it!

What if Mac does not recognize AirPods?

If somehow, your Mac does not list the AirPods even if you have paired it with an iPhone first and are using the same Apple ID, there is a trick that could help you to connect AirPods to Mac. Following are the steps:

First, make sure that your AirPods are charged.

Second, open the Bluetooth preferences on your Mac. You can access the Bluetooth preferences either from the menu bar, or go to the Apple menu> System Preferences>Bluetooth. Make sure that Bluetooth is actually on.

Third, put AirPods in the case and open the lid.

Fourth, press and hold the setup button, which is on the back of the case, until the status light turns white.

Fifth, on Mac’s Bluetooth preferences window, you should now see the AirPods.

Sixth, select AirPods from the Devices list and then click “Connect.”

Even now, if the audio comes from the Mac speakers, check the Bluetooth or volume drop-down menu in the menu bar. Make sure that the output mode is selected as AirPods. Hopefully you will now be able to hear music from your phone or Mac without changing the headphones.

If you are still facing issues in connecting AirPods to Mac, then you should contact Apple support.

Pairing brands new AirPods

In the second scenario, where your AirPods haven’t been connected to iPhone first (or any other Apple device), the process to connect AirPods to Mac is similar to above (when your Mac does not show AirPods). Following are the steps:

First, put the AirPods in the charging case and turn on the Mac.

Second, open System Preferences either from the Apple menu or Dock. Select the Bluetooth section, and then make sure that Bluetooth is on.

Third, open the lid of the AirPods case for better connectivity. At the back of the case, there will be a button (at the bottom center), press and hold it until the status light flashes to white. This button is basically for the set up as it turns on Bluetooth so that the AirPods can be sensed by nearby devices.

Fourth, in the Bluetooth section on your Mac, you should now see AirPods in the list of devices. Next to the AirPods in the list, there will be a blue button titled “Connect.” Click this button, and your AirPods will now connect to the Mac.

That’s it!

Often we hear complaints from users that when they try to connect AirPods to Macs, they get error messages, such as “Couldn’t connect to the device.” Users may get such messages due to connectivity issue or an issue with iCloud. If you also get similar error messages, then you can try the below three tricks to set things right:

First, turn off the Bluetooth on your Mac. Wait for about a minute, then turn it back on and try again. Now check if your AirPods connect successfully to the Mac. If not, then try the next trick.

Second, turn off your Mac and do the same with the AirPods. Now, turn them back on. Doing this often helps in addressing the connectivity issue.

Third, if you have an iPhone or iPad connected to your account, then go to the Bluetooth section of Settings on your iOS device. You will likely see AirPods connected here. If so, then select AirPods and choose “Forget this device.” Now try reconnecting your AirPods to Mac.

If these tricks don’t work, then you should contact Apple support.

Here is a video that will also help you connect AirPods to Mac:

Our Editorial Standards

At ValueWalk, we’re committed to providing accurate, research-backed information. Our editors go above and beyond to ensure our content is trustworthy and transparent.

Aman Jain
Personal Finance Writer

Want Financial Guidance Sent Straight to You?

  • Pop your email in the box, and you'll receive bi-weekly emails from ValueWalk.
  • We never send spam — only the latest financial news and guides to help you take charge of your financial future.