How to Update AirPods Firmware via Mac or iPhone


From time to time, Apple may release firmware updates for all models of AirPods, including AirPods Pro and AirPods Max. These over-the-air (OTA) updates usually include bug fixes, connectivity improvements, and stability improvements. Although Apple does not provide any official guidance on how to manually trigger AirPods firmware updates, users can take a few simple steps to initiate the update process. This tutorial shows how to update AirPods firmware via Mac, iPhone or iPad.

Check AirPods Firmware Version on iPhone and iPad

To check the firmware version of the AirPods you’re using, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Select the Bluetooth settings menu directly under the Wi-Fi toggle.
Bluetooth settings button
  1. Tap the blue letter “i” inside the circle to the right of the AirPods you want to update from the “MY DEVICES” list.
I Bluetooth button
  1. Locate “Version” under the “About” heading.
Airpods Versions Menu
  1. To the right of “Version,” find the alphanumeric firmware version that your AirPods are running. The current AirPods firmware is the version 4E71.
Airpods version number

Update AirPods Firmware Using iPhone or iPad

  1. Automatically connect your AirPods to your iPhone or iPad by placing them in (or on) your ears and waking your iPhone or iPad. A drop-down notification will confirm that your AirPods have been successfully paired to your device.
Airpods Connect Banner
  1. Launch the Music app.
Ios music app
  1. Listen to any song for at least 30 seconds before pausing playback.
Music app 30 seconds
  1. Place your AirPods in their case and make sure both earbuds are resting securely in their case. If you’re updating the AirPods Max, make sure the magnetic latch on its fabric case is closed.
Airpods Max flap
  1. Connect your AirPods to power via a Lightning cable or by placing them on a Qi-compatible wireless charger, such as MagSafe.
Charging Airpods 3
  1. Make sure your iPhone or iPad is charging and connected to the internet. The Wi-Fi and green battery icons should be visible in the upper right corner of your iPhone or iPad’s status bar.
iPhone status bar
  1. Place your iPhone or iPad near the AirPods.
Charging iPhone Airpods
  1. Unplug your iPhone and AirPods from power after 30 minutes, and your AirPods will be up to date. To confirm it, follow the instructions above to check AirPods firmware version on iPhone and iPad.
Airpods Power Disconnect 1

Check AirPods Firmware Version on Mac

  1. Automatically connect your AirPods to your Mac by placing them in (or on) your ears and waking your Mac. A notification banner will appear in the upper right corner of your Mac screen, confirming that you have successfully paired your AirPods, and an AirPods icon will appear in the menu bar.
Connect Monterey Airpods
  1. Select the Apple icon from the menu bar in the upper left corner of your Mac screen.
Monterey Menu Bar Apple Icon
  1. Select “About This Mac” from the drop-down menu.
Monterey Menu Bar About Mac
  1. Select “System Report” from the pop-up window.
System report button
  1. Select “Hardware” from the menu on the far left.
Hardware Button Monterey 1
  1. Select Bluetooth from the new drop-down menu.
Monterey Bluetooth Hardware
  1. Find your AirPods in the list of Bluetooth accessories on the right sidebar.
Monterey Airpods Pro
  1. Look for the text that says “Firmware Version” under your AirPods.
Monterey Airpods Firmware 2
  1. The alphanumeric firmware version that your AirPods are running will be to the right of “Firmware Version”. The current AirPods firmware is the version 4E71.
Monterey Airpods Firmware 3

Update AirPods Firmware Using Mac

  1. Plug your AirPods into your Mac using a Lightning to USB or Lightning to USB-C cable.
Charging Airpods on Mac
  1. Wait at least half an hour before disconnecting your AirPods to update the firmware.
Mac timer 30 minutes

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I troubleshoot failed AirPods or AirPods Pro update attempts?

Make sure your right and left AirPods are free of debris and moisture, especially on or around the silver metal contacts on the bottom of each earbud. Learn how to clean your AirPods and AirPods Pro.

Which AirPods models are compatible with wireless charging?

AirPods (3rd generation) and AirPods Pro include wireless charging compatible charging cases. If you use AirPods (1st or 2nd generation), you can buy another wireless charging case from Apple.

How long do AirPods take to update?

Once connected to power, all models of AirPods can take at least 30 minutes to update, regardless of the device they are paired to. If your AirPods don’t update on the first try, repeat the update process detailed above using your Mac or iOS device.

How do I fix my AirPods Max if they won’t update?

Since AirPods Max doesn’t have a power off button, it will enter an ultra-low power state if left idle for more than five minutes. Sometimes the AirPods Max can get stuck in this efficiency mode, which prevents them from charging and therefore updating. To fix this, see how to restart and reset your AirPods Max for a detailed overview.

Image credit: Apple. All screenshots taken by Brahm Shank.

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