Hello everyone! As an AirPods owner, I was recently frustrated when trying to use my AirPods with two devices at the same time. After doing some research and improving my expertise on the subject, I decided to create this blog post to share what I learned and the solutions I discovered. In this post, I will explain if it is possible to use AirPods with two devices at the same time and what steps you can take to make it happen. So let’s dive right in and find out if you can use AirPods with two devices simultaneously!
|AirPods can only receive audio from one device at a time, regardless of if they are basic AirPods or AirPod Pros.
|Automatic switching between Apple devices is possible with AirPods, and this can be controlled by setting up the Bluetooth settings on each device.
|AirPods can be connected to multiple non-Apple products at once, though this will involve a manual process.
|Playing multiple audio tracks with AirPods is possible if the connected device can play multiple tracks.
|Multiple AirPods can be connected to one device using a Bluetooth splitter, but additional adapters may be needed depending on the device.
Table of Contents
Can AirPods be used with 2 devices at the same time?
AirPods can only connect through Bluetooth and accept input from one device at a time. This is true for both the basic AirPods and AirPod Pros.
When you connect your AirPods to a new device, it unpairs from the previously connected device. You can take steps to make pairing with different devices easier, but they will still only work with one of those devices at a time.
There are some other manufacturers who produce Bluetooth headphones that can connect to multiple devices at the same time, but the feature is an unnecessary capability for most users.
However, you can have your AirPods paired with as many devices as you like. Also, the automatic switching feature does mean that you can quickly switch between Apple devices when you need to.
Read more: What does it mean when AirPods beep?
How do you use AirPods with multiple Apple devices?
Once connected, AirPods automatically work with devices using a linked Apple ID when they begin to play audio. The most recent audio takes priority by default.
AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max have fast connection options for macBooks, Apple TVs, iPads, and other Apple devices running the latest version of macOS or iOS.
To connect your AirPods, move them close to the intended device while in their charging case. The device should display a prompt to Connect the AirPods. Make sure you’re signed onto the same Apple ID on all intended devices.
Switching between devices will happen automatically from that point whenever a linked device is used.
This is a convenient feature when you’re listening to the audio from one device but a call comes to your iPhone, letting you seamlessly swap from one to the other.
Users running the latest MacOs, Big Sur, may receive a prompt about switching the AirPods first.
Manually switching between audio output devices can be accomplished either through the specific application or based on the type of device.
On mobile iOS devices, you can do so by selecting the AirPlay icon from the lock screen.
For macOS, the option is located in the volume control menu when you click the speaker icon in the menu bar.
Apple TV users should check the Settings for Remotes and Devices then navigate to the Bluetooth menu. Once there, you should see the option to select your audio output device.
An option in the Bluetooth setting menus for each device can change how the automatic pairing occurs. For iOS and macOS devices, navigate to the Bluetooth settings, click the more info or options button next to the device’s name, then switch to the “When Last Connected” option in the Connect to This Device menu.
On an Apple TV, go to the Bluetooth menu, then disable the Suggest Nearby AirPods option. With those options changed, you have manual control over your AirPods’ connectivity.
Read more: Why is my AirPods case flashing red?
Can AirPods be used with non-Apple Products simultaneously?
As with Apple products, AirPods can only accept one Bluetooth connection at a time from non-Apple products.
Losing other features that make AirPods easier to use with Apple products is the main difference. The restriction on the number of Bluetooth pairings is limited by the AirPods, not the system to which it is connected.
Your PC likely won’t automatically switch back to the AirPods, but the manual process is roughly the same difficulty as it is on Apple devices after the first time you pair them.
Can you play multiple audio tracks with AirPods?
As long as the connected device can play multiple audio tracks, AirPods can accept and play the audio input.
While you can’t pair the AirPods with multiple devices at the same time, mixing multiple audio outputs can be accomplished through a single linked device. Just play the audio like you would normally. Sound quality is likely to degrade when used this way.
Some applications will automatically turn off their audio when the application doesn’t have focus or it detects another type of audio playing.
Common examples are things like a music application on your phone being disabled when you answer an incoming phone call or the sound of a game stopping when it’s minimized.
Can multiple AirPods connect to one device?
You can share your audio to multiple connected AirPods on Apple or other devices running Bluetooth 5.0 or later, or by using a Bluetooth splitter.
Multiple Bluetooth connections were enabled in version 5.0, released in 2018.
A device’s Bluetooth version is linked to hardware components, so older devices may not be capable of multiple connections without an upgrade.
For Apple products, newer iOS devices and Apple TVs running at least tvOS version 14 are compatible.
For iOS devices, select the AirPlay menu again, then go to Share Audio. Bring the secondary AirPods or other listening devices close to the main device so they can pair.
Once the Bluetooth has detected the AirPods, another Share Audio button will appear. Press it, and they’re connected! On an Apple TV, just connect each pair of AirPods normally.
Some Android phones have a Dual Audio feature that allows two devices to listen. In the Android settings, find the Bluetooth menu, tap the ellipses icon to find the Advanced Settings, and enable the Dual Audio feature. The latest two devices to pair with the phone will be able to share the audio.
For Windows devices, the process is slightly more involved, especially when you want to pair multiple AirPods.
If you have a pair of AirPods and another Bluetooth speaker, you can get both to work by pairing them as normal. Next, open up the volume settings, most easily accessed through the taskbar menu.
Head to the recording tab, then select the second pair of headphones with a right-click. Checkmark the Listen on this Device option with a click, then pick the other headset from the menu just below it.
If you want to connect multiple AirPods to a PC or another device, you’ll need a Bluetooth splitter: a device you can plug into an audio source to share it via Bluetooth.
There are a variety of models that work with different types of audio players and have different maximum connections, and you may need additional adapters or other splitters for each one.
The sheer number of different options requires that you plan out your usage and do additional research on your potential splitters before purchase, or you may end up wasting your money.
- AirPods can be connected to multiple Apple products and quickly switch between those devices.
- AirPods can be connected to multiple non-Apple products, although this requires a manual process.
- Playing multiple audio tracks with AirPods is possible if the connected device can play multiple tracks.
- Multiple AirPods can be connected to one device using a Bluetooth splitter, though additional adapters may be needed.
- AirPods can only receive audio from one device at a time.
- Automatic switching between Apple devices is possible, but it cannot be manually controlled.
- Connecting multiple AirPods to one device requires a Bluetooth splitter and additional adapters may be needed.
- Mixing multiple audio outputs can cause sound quality issues.