How Far Can AirPods Be Away From My Phone? [A Definitive Guide]

Before investing in a new set of AirPods, you might want to know how far can AirPods be away from your phone and provide clear audio.

On average, AirPods have an optimal range of 30 to 60 feet depending on the surroundings and headphone chip. AirPods with W1 chip (1st gen) can easily provide a 33 to 50 feet rangeOpens in a new tab. (10-15 meters). And for H1 chips (2nd gen), the maximum reach is higher but there’s no specific coverage. But it is estimated to go around 100 feet (30 meters) if there’s no interference. 

The range also depends on multiple factors like radio interference, physical obstacles, and congestion. As for the maximum range, some users claim to receive around 400 feet of coverageOpens in a new tab.! But is that really possible? How would you access such coverage? 

Stay with us to discover more about AirPod’s signaling range and related issues you might face while using the device.

Understanding the Optimal And Maximum Range Of AirPods

Understanding the Optimal And Maximum Range Of AirPods

To fully estimate how far your AirPods can be away from your phone, you need to understand the optimal and maximum range. The optimal range for AirPods refers to the average distance of how far your AirPods can be away from your iPhone or other connected devices. And for your 1st Gen AirPods, this range should be from 30 to 50 feet. You’ll enjoy clear and uninterrupted audio within this range.

The latest Bluetooth version (5.0 or 5.3) and the integrated H1 chip ensure that your AirPods perform well even beyond this range. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean your AirPods will stop streaming once you pass the optimal limit.

The maximum range indicates the highest distance from your phone within which the AirPods audio flow remains clear and uninterrupted. There is no official record that specifies the maximum range. Some users say it’s 100 feet, some say 400! But Apple hasn’t officially claimed anything about AirPod’s maximum coverage.

How Far Can AirPods Be Away From My Phone?

What If AirPods Are Not Connecting Even When In Range?

As soon as you open your charging case and the Bluetooth connection on your Apple device, it should immediately connect to the AirPods, right? Well, sometimes it might not be that easy even though you’re inside the 30 feet range. Here are some possible reasons and solutions for such connection problems-

Your AirPods Aren’t Charged

As this Apple accessory uses lithium batteries for power and fast charging, it’s essential to keep them charged for smooth performance. So, if your AirPods aren’t connecting within the range, it’s probably not fully charged.

Solution: First, notice the signal light on your AirPods to be sure. If it’s red, put the AirPods inside the case and charge for at least one hour.

The Device Isn’t Updated

Apple has set minimum system requirements for 1st and 2nd generation AirPods and AirPods Pro. The reason why you’re not able to connect the AirPods can be that your device doesn’t meet these standards.

AirPods ModelSoftware RequirementAirPods Specs
AirPods 1st geniOS 10 or laterW1 Chip, Bluetooth 4.2
AirPods 2nd geniOS 10 or laterH1 Chip, Bluetooth 5.0
AirPods 3rd geniOS 12 or later (iOS 16 recommended)H1 Chip, Bluetooth 5.0
AirPods Pro 1st geniOS 12 or later (iOS 16 recommended)H1 Chip, Bluetooth 5.0
AirPods Pro 2nd geniOS 12 or later (iOS 16 recommended)H1 Chip, Bluetooth 5.3

Solution: Go to your device settings and select Software Update. Check for the recent iOS versions and update your device. And do not forget to back up your data before and system update.

It’s A System Glitch

Reason: Sometimes it’s not your fault at all and the connection won’t work because of some problems in the system. It can be the AirPods or the device causing the problem. Besides, there may be connectivity issues with Bluetooth. However, like the other problems, this one is also fixable.

Solution: First, turn off your Bluetooth and restart your AirPods and Apple device. This might solve the issue immediately. If it doesn’t work, you need to unpair the AirPods and pair them again after some time.

You can easily unpair the device from your settings app. Go to the ‘Bluetooth’ option and tap on your AirPod’s name. Select ‘Forget this Device’ and it will be removed from your phone.

Wait at least 1 minute before retaining the connection. This time you should be able to connect to the AirPods within range.

Tips to Know If You’re Inside The AirPods Range

By now, you already know that your AirPods might not connect even if you’re inside the optimal Bluetooth range. So, how do you decide whether you’re too far from the range or inside it?

Here are some tips that might help-

Keep the AirPods Close to Your Phone

If your audio is getting interrupted, try taking the AirPods closer to the Apple device you’re using. You’ll regain the connection and the audio will become clear in case you were out of the range before. To know the optimal range, you can start walking away from the device and keep checking at what distance the sound becomes distorted.

Keep the AirPods Close to Your Phone

Keep your AirPods Charged

The other issue can be due to low battery charge. Luckily, it’s super easy to check on your battery charge. Just take your AirPods closer to the device and flip the case lid. An animation will appear on your device screen indicating how much charge is left.

Avoid Pairing the AirPods to Multiple Devices

Pairing to multiple devices at a time can also create connection issues. To solve this, turn off the Bluetooth connection on every device other than the device you want to play from. By doing so, you should easily fix the connection problem.

Does AirPods’ Bluetooth Affect Audio Quality & Range?

Just like any other audio device using a Bluetooth connection, AirPods also converts audio codecs and lower the resolution. Hence, the audio quality is affected and the bandwidth within the range will be limited.

Some impacts on the audio quality include-

  • For Bluetooth 4.2Opens in a new tab. used in first-generation AirPods, the bandwidth is within 1 Mbps only. Max reach is around 50 feet or 15 meters. The further you move away from your iPhone the weaker audio quality gets.

Along with Advanced Audio Coding (AAC), Apple AirPods are infused with 2 Advanced Audio Distribution Profiles or A2DP. In the Bluetooth devices like AirPods, Apple infused the default 1.3 SBC or Sub-Band Coding.

This means, when you’re nearer to the connected device, the audio is in higher resolution AAC. In the presence of any physical obstacles, it can shift to SBC. However, the process is smooth and quick. So, the sound quality will remain almost the same.

How to Get Better AirPods Connection?

Want to enjoy your favorite music without any interruption? Follow the instructions provided below for a stable AirPods connection.

Keep the Device Charged

As soon as the battery is down, the audio on your AirPods will stop immediately. Besides, low battery percentage can hamper the Bluetooth connection too. Keep your AirPods and the connected device charged to avoid any kind of interruptions.

Stay Away from Other Electronic Devices

Many users faced connection issues in the presence of other electronic devices. Devices like the Apple Watch and speakers use Bluetooth connectivity like your AirPods. Hence, multiple established connections can distract the audio on your AirPods. Stay away from such devices to enjoy the best sound quality.

Stay Away from Other Electronic Devices

Remove Physical Obstacles

Bluetooth waves are mostly affected by physical obstacles while transmitting from device to device. Remove any such barriers if your AirPods aren’t connecting. In case the obstacle is large and fixed like a wall, try going closer to the connected device.

Avoid Public Gatherings

Everyone has a phone in their pockets with Bluetooth connectivity. That’s why public areas are the least ideal place for Bluetooth wave transmission. If you can’t avoid them, at least keep your phone and AirPods as close as possible.

Final Words

Although the Bluetooth range for your AirPods depends on many different factors, you can rely on the device to cover at least a 30 feet area. Here we have covered how far can AirPods be away from phones without any interruption.

To ensure a stable connection, avoid physical obstacles and be around other devices using Bluetooth connectivity. If you still face connection issues, you can contact Apple Support to solve the issue.

Md Mehedi Hasan

Hello, Mehedi here! I love Apple devices and everything that comes with it. I've been using iPhones from the early days of iPhone 5s, and since then, I've kept myself updated with the latest Apple updates, accessories, different issues, and their fixes. I truly believe that every issue with iPhones can be fixed, and you'll find these solutions here at Techiaid.

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