You see someone walking toward you on the street, seemingly talking to themselves. Then, upon passing, you see they have those familiar white earbuds: AirPods. AirPods are more for just listening to music, though—which begs the question: do they have a mic?
AirPods do have a mic, one located on each stem. This makes them perfect for making recordings or taking phone calls.
They’re also designed so they cut down on background noise, creating a crisp, clear sound––better than most earbuds on today’s market. Continue reading to learn more about your AirPods’ mic capabilities. We’ll also provide some troubleshooting tips if the mic stops working.
Do AirPods Have Mics?
Not only do your AirPods come with mics, but the mics come with certain advantages:
- With wired earbuds, the microphone jostles while in use, creating “white sound” and obstructing your voice. Your AirPods’ microphone stays in place.
- Because of the AirPods’ microphones’ location, they cut down on background noise, such as passing cars and gusts of wind. They focus on your voice when you’re speaking.
- Your AirPods are water-resistant. So, if your AirPods’ microphones or speakers get sprinkled with water, they’ll still work.
What Can You Use Your AirPods’ Mic for?
In addition to using your AirPods’ mics with your smartphone, you can also use them with:
- Most video game consoles, including the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X
- Various smart TVs, including Samsung’s line of smart TVs
- Your iPad and Kindle
There is no limit to what you can use your AirPods’ microphones with. If you want to use your AirPods with a non-Bluetooth device, consider getting a Bluetooth adapter or using a wired connection.
How to Use Your AirPods’ Microphones
If your AirPods are already connected to your phone, then the microphones will start working when you make or take a phone call. However, even though your AirPods come with two mics, only one will be active when in use. To use either the left or right microphone, you should:
- Turn on your AirPods.
- Go into your phone’s settings.
- Turn on Bluetooth.
- Find your AirPods, then tap the information icon on the right-hand side.
- Tap Microphone.
Now, you’ll see three options:
- Automatically Switch AirPods. This function will automatically turn on the left or right microphone, depending on which one is in use.
- Always Left AirPod. This will make it so the microphone on your left AirPod records sound.
- Always Right AirPod. This will always make the right microphone work.
After selecting the setting that’s right for you, your AirPods will automatically allow you to record sound, make and take calls, and use the “Hey Siri” or “Okay Google” command (depending on what phone you have).
What Happens if My AirPods’ Mics Don’t Work?
If your AirPods’ mic doesn’t work, you have many troubleshooting options, such as:
Charging Your AirPods
Once the battery starts waning on your AirPods, you might experience less-than-ideal sound and microphone quality. How often you need to charge your AirPods depends on your use. It takes about 20 minutes to reach a full charge.
Reconnect the AirPods to Your Phone
When you turn on your AirPods, they’ll automatically pair with your phone. However, it won’t connect to two devices at once. You can put your AirPods in Bluetooth pairing mode by:
- Putting your AirPods in their charging case.
- Closing the lid.
- Holding down on the charging case’s button for about 10 seconds.
When the light on the charging case flashes, you can reconnect it to your phone.
Clean the Microphone
Your AirPods come with an ingress protection rating of IPX4. This means that in addition to being water-resistant, they resist particles of dust, dirt, and other debris. However, you should periodically clean your AirPods and microphone for the best possible results.
You should take a sanitizing towelette and wipe the speaker and area around the microphone. Do not press any particles into the microphone or speaker, as this could cause permanent damage.
File a Warranty Claim
Your Apple AirPods are an investment, and with proper care, they should last several years. Yet, for whatever reason, a factory defect may prevent your AirPods from functioning quality. The microphone might cut out, render low-quality recordings, or not work at all.
When this happens, you generally have one year to file a warranty claim with Apple. Based on the problem, it may replace or repair your AirPods free of charge. You can read more about filing a warranty claim by clicking here.
A Final Word
Your AirPods come with not one, but two microphones. They should automatically work when you connect your AirPods via Bluetooth. For the best possible results, you should make sure your AirPods’ mic defaults to either the left or right bud.