XDA Basics: Do Apple AirPods work with Android? How to pair them?

XDA Basics: Do Apple AirPods work with Android? How to pair them?

Like most of its products, Apple wasn’t the first company to launch truly wireless earbuds. But when it did launch the AirPods, it was able to immediately carve out a place for them, and now Apple completely dominates the market for the premium wireless earbuds. Naturally, a lot of people consider buying the AirPods, including Android users, which leads to the question — do Apple AirPods work with Android smartphones? The short answer to this question is yes, AirPods work with Android devices.

AirPods are not iOS-exclusive earbuds. These TWS earbuds can work with pretty much any Bluetooth-enabled device. If you don’t want to give up your Android phone just to enjoy AirPods, you don’t have to. But as you’d expect, you’ll lose some of the features of the AirPods which iPhone users enjoy, like the battery indicator and access to Siri. There are however workarounds to get at least a couple of these features back.

One such workaround is installing an app like the Assistant Trigger from the Google Play store. It shows the AirPods battery level, and allows you to activate Google Assistant by tapping or squeezing the AirPods. There’s a pro version of the app as well that claims to add support for AirPods in-ear detection but if the Google Play store reviews are any indication, it doesn’t seem to work for everyone.

Overall the AirPods and Android are an unconventional match, but if you want, you can make them work.

How to pair AirPods with your Android phone

Pairing AirPods with Android

Unlike with an iPhone, which can be paired by just opening the AirPods case, Android users will have to go to the Bluetooth settings to connect to the AirPods.

  • On your Android phone, swipe down from the top to open the Quick Settings panel.
  • Long-press on the Bluetooth icon to open the Bluetooth settings. Alternatively, you can go to the Bluetooth settings via the Settings app.
  • Once you are in the Bluetooth settings, you’ll see an option like Pair a new device. Tap on it. If you don’t see such an option, make sure Bluetooth is switched on, and wait for the AirPods to show up under Available devices.
  • Open the lid of the AirPods charging case with the AirPods in them, and press and hold the button on the back of the case until the light starts blinking white. If you’re using AirPods Max, take them out of the smart case, and press and hold the noise control button until the light on the right earcup starts blinking white.
  • Your phone will now detect the AirPods and show them under Available devices. Tap on it, and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the pairing process.
  • You can now use them like any other TWS earbuds.

You can install the Assistant Trigger app we mentioned earlier, to see the battery level and link Google Assistant to get triggered when you tap or squeeze the AirPods stem. If you want to customize the AirPods controls, you can borrow a friend or family member’s iPhone and use that to customize them. These customizations will continue to be available on your AirPods even after disconnecting them from the iPhone.

    Apple AirPods Pro
    AirPods Pro are Apple's premium wireless earbuds. These come with a new design and active noise cancellation.

Hopefully, this answers your questions about AirPods and Android. If you’re in the market for a new phone, don’t forget to check our guides on the best Android phones and the best iPhone.

About author

Gaurav Shukla
Gaurav Shukla

Gaurav has been covering technology for over a decade now. He has done everything from blogging about Android to reporting the latest from the world of Internet giants. When he is not writing about the tech companies, he can be found binge-watching new TV series on the web.