How to Connect AirPods to Your Laptop

October 31, 2022 • Devin Partida


Apple’s AirPods are some of the most popular listening devices in the world, with multiple models and selling upwards of 100 million units per year. They can connect to mobile devices easily enough, but learning how to connect AirPods to a laptop is a little more complicated. Not only are there more steps involved, but disconnections occur more often

Here’s how to connect AirPods to your laptop, whether you own a MacBook or PC.

How to Connect AirPods to PC

Before we jump into the steps, make sure your AirPods are clean and have a strong charge – both the earbuds and the case. Dirt and a low battery won’t necessarily make the connection more difficult, but you should use this opportunity to make sure your AirPods are in good working order.

  1. Put your AirPods and PC next to each other.
  1. Open Settings on your PC in the bottom left corner.
  1. Go to Devices > Bluetooth and other devices. Make sure your laptop’s Bluetooth utility is turned on.
  1. Click the “+” icon next to Add Bluetooth or other device.
  1. Click Bluetooth in the next window.
  1. Open your AirPod case, keeping the earbuds inside.
  1. Press and hold the button on the back of the case until the status light starts blinking white. Your AirPods are now in pairing mode.
  1. Once the light starts flashing, your AirPods should appear as a Bluetooth option on your laptop.
  1. Click on the name you gave your AirPods.
  1. Windows will connect your laptop to your AirPods and open a confirmation tab. Click Done in the bottom right corner. That’s it!

Your AirPods can technically connect to Windows 8, but you will have a much easier time updating to Windows 10 or 11. Make the necessary updates and save yourself some sanity.

How to Connect AirPods to MacBook

AirPods are generally easier to connect to MacBooks because they’re both Apple products, but the compatibility varies by model: 

  • 2nd generation AirPods require macOS Mojave 10.14.4 or later.
  • AirPods Pro require macOS Catalina 10.15.1 or later.
  • 3rd Generation AirPods require macOS Monterey or later.

Once you have the updates that correspond with your model of AirPods, you’re ready to dive into the steps.

  1. Go to the Apple menu on your MacBook.
  2. Click on System Preferences > Bluetooth and make sure the Bluetooth function is turned on.
  3. Open the lid on your AirPods case, then press and hold the setup button on the back until it starts flashing white.
  4. The name of your AirPods will appear on the Devices list. Click on it to confirm the connection. That’s it!

If you use iCloud with your other Apple devices, this procedure might not be necessary because your MacBook already recognizes your AirPods. Just sign into your iCloud profile with the same credentials as usual, go to your MacBook’s menu bar and look for your AirPods on the list.

Enjoy Your Listening Experience

The sound quality of your AirPods won’t change from your mobile device to your laptop. Still, something about connecting them to a larger screen makes the experience more enjoyable. So follow these steps for your specific device and enjoy your listening experience!