AirPods are predominantly used with Apple devices such as iPhones or iPads, but they can also be used with PCs and laptops. However, not all PCs have Bluetooth connectivity.
How to connect AirPods to a PC without Bluetooth.
To connect AirPods to a PC without Bluetooth will require a USB Bluetooth adapter. AirPods are wireless, so the only way to connect them to another device is through a Bluetooth connection. If your PC lacks Bluetooth connectivity, you’ll need to use a Bluetooth dongle to use your AirPods.
If your computer doesn’t have onboard Bluetooth and you would like to listen to audio through your AirPods, you’ll find the information in this guide useful.
Thankfully, there is a simple solution that is fairly inexpensive and will allow you to start using your AirPods with your PC or laptop right away. So you won’t feel like the woman in the picture below!
Best Bluetooth Dongle for AirPods
To connect your AirPods to a PC that doesn’t have Bluetooth connectivity, you’ll need to use a Bluetooth dongle. These devices are also commonly called “wireless Bluetooth adapters” or “USB Bluetooth adapters”.
The adapter is plugged into the USB port on your PC or laptop, and it will then begin to scan for nearby Bluetooth devices. You can then find your AirPods from the devices list that pops up on your PC, and connect them using the adapter.
This will allow you to listen to audio through your AirPods, in the same way, that you would if your PC had onboard Bluetooth connectivity.
Despite the simplicity of this process, choosing a Bluetooth dongle for your AirPods can be difficult. There are so many options available that it can be tricky to identify the adapters that are worth buying and those that are of lesser quality and should be avoided.
The first thing you need to check is that the dongle is compatible with the connector type that your PC or laptop facilitates. In the majority of cases, using a USB dongle will be the easiest option, as most PCs have at least one USB port for external devices.
You then need to check that the Bluetooth adapter is compatible with the version of Windows that you are running on your PC. Some dongles may be exclusive to a specific version, like Windows 10 or 11, while others may be compatible with several different versions.
The TP-Link USB Bluetooth Adapter is one of the most reliable choices for AirPods users. This device is compatible with Windows 11, and the previous five versions of Windows.
Furthermore, the device supports Bluetooth 4.0, which is the latest version and is also backward compatible with earlier versions of Bluetooth. Also, this adapter has a maximum operating range of 65ft, which means you don’t need to be close to your PC to enjoy audio through your AirPods.
Another reliable USB Bluetooth dongle for AirPods is the EVEO Bluetooth Adapter for PC. This device boasts incredibly fast data transfer, installs in less than one minute, and allows you to connect up to six other devices along with your AirPods. However, it is only compatible with Windows 10.
If you’re looking for a Bluetooth adapter that is designed specifically for AirPods, the Twelve South AirFly Pro is a great choice. It can be used with a PC by plugging the 3.5mm jack connector into the headphone port and connecting it to your AirPods via Bluetooth.
How To Use a USB Bluetooth Adapter with AirPods
The only way that you can connect AirPods to a PC or other device that doesn’t have Bluetooth connectivity is by investing in an adapter, like the ones we suggested earlier in this guide.
There is no other way to connect AirPods to a non-Bluetooth device.
Unlike some earbuds and headphones that can either be used wirelessly or with a cable, AirPods are exclusively wireless by design, and therefore you can’t plug a cable into your PC to use them.
The good news is that Bluetooth adapters aren’t very expensive, and they’re also very easy to set up.
Plus, investing in a Bluetooth dongle will allow you to connect any other wireless devices to your PC in the future, such as a wireless mouse, keyboard, or wireless speaker.
Once you’ve chosen a USB Bluetooth adapter, the process of using the device will most likely be as follows.
First of all, you need to plug the USB adapter into your PC’s USB port, and this should trigger an automatic installation process. After a couple of minutes, your PC should say that the adapter is ready to use.
You can then place your AirPods in the charging case with the lid open, before pressing the setup button on the rear of the case. This will cause the status light to flash white, indicating that your AirPods are ready to be paired with the Bluetooth adapter.
You’ll then need to open the Bluetooth adapter on your PC, which can be found by going to the “This PC” page. The AirPods should be displayed on the nearby devices, and you can then select them to pair them to your PC via the Bluetooth adapter.
The same process can be used to connect any other Bluetooth device to your PC, providing the adapter has the capabilities to connect multiple devices simultaneously.
Check out this YouTube video for more information on setting up Bluetooth for headphones.
Can You Connect AirPods to a PC Without the Case?
Once you’ve got a Bluetooth adapter to connect your AirPods to your PC, you’ll need the case to pair the devices. If you haven’t got the case, you can only connect to devices that you’ve already previously paired the AirPods to.
This can be inconvenient, especially if you want to connect your AirPods to a Bluetooth adapter or a device but you haven’t taken your charging case with you. This is one of the reasons it’s always best to transport your AirPods inside their dedicated case.
Making it a habit to place your AirPods inside the charging case whenever you’re not using them will prevent you from misplacing them as easily. It will also protect them from being dropped, stepped on, or exposed to the elements.
You’ll also be able to charge your AirPods if you have the case, and if you need to connect them to a Bluetooth device that they are yet to be paired with, then you can do this with no issues.
If you’ve lost your AirPods case you’ll need to get a replacement otherwise they will be unusable once the battery runs flat. Make sure you get an authentic Apple charging case from a reputable retailer, as there are bound to be some convincing counterfeits being sold online.
Can You Find One Lost AirPod
Losing one of your AirPods can be very frustrating. Thankfully, you can use the “Find My” app to locate each AirPods with ease, providing you have set the feature up before you misplaced the AirPod.
When you select your AirPods from the devices menu in the “Find My” app, you can then choose to play a sound so that you can locate them. The app will let you choose between the left and right AirPods when triggering the sound.
If you’ve only lost one AirPod, you can select it in the menu and listen out for the sound that is played. This should hopefully help you to find the AirPods that have been lost in your home.
The same applies if you’ve lost your charging case with one of your AirPods inside it. You can trigger the sound to play, and providing the case AirPod is still connected to your Apple device, it will be linked to the “Find My” app.
Why are my AirPods not connecting to my Windows laptop?
If your AirPods are not connecting to your Windows laptop, this is probably because you don’t have Bluetooth connectivity turned on. Go to the settings menu on your laptop, select Bluetooth then check that it is turned on and ready to connect to your AirPods.
Do your AirPods need drivers?
AirPods don’t necessarily need any specific drivers, but it will help if your computer has the latest Bluetooth drive installed. This will usually be installed when your computer or laptop restarts, and it will ensure that the AirPods work smoothly with the device.
Do both AirPods have a mic?
Both AirPods have inbuilt microphones that are used for making calls or making voice commands to Siri. Either of the AirPods can be used for voice calls, as they each have a separate independent microphone.