One of the main selling points of wireless earbuds like AirPods is that they are so small and easy to store away or transport. However, this also means that they’re very easy to misplace.
How to remove AirPods from “Find My iPhone” – if you have the AirPods and access to your Find My app, you can simply log into the Find My app on your iPhone or go to the iCloud website, and remove the AirPods. Alternatively, if you don’t have access to the “Find My” account, you can factory reset the AirPods.
Linking your AirPods to the “Find My” app is very useful if you ever lose them, but it only shows you the last place that they were connected to your iPhone or other Apple device.
Therefore, it’s not effective at preventing AirPods from being used by another person if they are lost, as the person can simply sync them to their iPhone after factory resetting them.
How Do You Remove Your AirPods from Someone Else’s Find My iPhone?
If your AirPods are currently linked up to another person’s “Find My” app, this could be problematic for several reasons. Firstly, the person may be able to see your location or the location that you were last at when your AirPods were connected to their device.
Although the person won’t be able to track your location unless you are within 40ft of their device, this still may be something that you understandably want to avoid.
Indeed, the easiest way to get your AirPods removed would be to ask the person to log into their “Find My” app and do it for you, but this isn’t always possible.
When your AirPods are linked to someone else’s “Find My” account, this means you cannot connect them to your account until they have been removed. Thankfully, there is an easy solution to this problem that will work without you needing to get in touch with the other person.
All that you need to do to remove the AirPods from someone else’s “Find My” account, is to perform a factory reset. To do this, you need the charging case and both AirPods. Here are the instructions you need to follow.
- Open your AirPods charging case and place both AirPods inside
- Keep the lid open
- Locate the “Setup” button that is positioned on the rear of the AirPods case
- Hold this button down for around 15 seconds until the status light flashes amber, then white
Once you’ve followed these simple steps, your AirPods will now be reset to factory settings. This means they will be disconnected from any “Find My” account, iPhone, or any other device they’ve been previously paired with.
How Do I Reset My Stolen AirPods?
If your AirPods have been stolen or lost, it’s understandable that you would want to reset them so that they can’t be used by another person. Unfortunately, this is not possible once someone else has factory reset them and linked them to their device.
Unlike most smartphones, which can be locked remotely by a network provider, AirPods aren’t trackable because they don’t have an internet signal. They simply have Bluetooth connectivity which only allows them to be tracked up to around 40 ft away using the “Find My” app.
Once your stolen AirPods have been taken more than 40 ft away, the “Find My” app will only show you the last location that they were connected to your device. If the thief knows what they are doing, they will have likely already factory reset them and therefore disconnected them from your “Find My” account.
Many AirPods users have been left disappointed and criticized Apple for not doing enough to make the earbuds harder for thieves to steal. It’s much harder to steal a smartphone these days, but stealing AirPods is relatively easy to get away with.
If your AirPods have been stolen, you should notify the police and see whether you can locate them on the “Find My” app. You can cause an alarm tone to play through the AirPods if they are nearby.
Can Reset AirPods Be Tracked?
Once a set of AirPods has been reset to factory settings, there’s, unfortunately, no way that they can then be tracked. It’s possible to do this with a smartphone because the device can connect to the internet but AirPods only connect via Bluetooth.
AirPods are often stolen, probably because thieves know that they can’t be tracked if they’ve been reset. There have been many calls for Apple to do something about this, but in all honesty, it’s difficult to think of any solutions other than placing trackers in AirPods, but this is not an option for ethical and safety reasons.
Keeping AirPods in the charging case when they aren’t being used is a good measure to take if you want to prevent them from falling out and being lost. The AirPods themselves are so small that it’s easy for them to go missing if they fall out of your ear or your pocket accidentally.
Even if you have the serial number for your AirPods, you won’t be able to use this to track them. Again, because they can’t connect to GPS or the internet, there’s no way to locate them outside the Bluetooth range.
If you lose your AirPods, the only chance you’ve got of finding them is to retrace your steps and to see whether anyone has picked them up or handed them in. Hopefully, this is something most people would do but there are unfortunately some people who would steal them instead.
Here’s a YouTube from the Apple channel that explains how to find lost AirPods.
How Far Can AirPods Be Tracked?
AirPods can be tracked until they are 40ft away, as this is the maximum range of the onboard Bluetooth connectivity. Once the distance surpasses 40ft, it’s impossible to track them using the “Find My” app.
The 40ft maximum range is useful if you misplace your AirPods in your home, or somewhere nearby. You can use the “Find My” app to locate them, providing they are still connected to your iPhone or iPad via Bluetooth.
If you lose your iPhone, the “Find My iPhone” app allows you to pinpoint the location of your device through its internet connection. This gives it an unlimited range so that you can see where the phone was last online even if you’ve lost your phone on a vacation and are now in a different country!
Many AirPods users assume that the “Find My” feature will work just as well for the wireless earbuds, without considering the important fact that it relies solely on a Bluetooth signal to be located, rather than an internet connection.
This means that if you leave your AirPods on public transport, there’s little chance of the “Find My” app making it possible for them to be found.
AirPods are still relatively new products, with the first generation being released in 2016. Therefore, it wouldn’t be surprising if Apple was planning to address the lack of distance that they can be located using the “Find My” app as they improve future models.
You only have to look at the improvements that were made between the original AirPods and the AirPods Pro, which came out less than three years after the first generation. Apple introduced a whole host of new features, including Active Noise Cancellation, Adaptive EQ, Spatial Audio, and more.
If this rapid improvement is anything to go by, I would predict that the next models of AirPods that Apple releases will either have a more extensive Bluetooth range due to improved components, or users will be able to connect them to a GPS signal to locate them from further away.
This would certainly please many AirPods users who feel that the current “Find My” feature is only really helpful if you misplace the earbuds indoors, rather than if they are lost or stolen.
Can I find my lost AirPods without my iPhone?
If you don’t have access to the Find My iPhone app, you can locate them by signing into your iCloud account on any web browser. Once you log in, you will see the “Find My” menu and you can choose to play a sound from your AirPods to find them.
How do I find my AirPods when they are offline or dead?
If your AirPods are offline or have run out of battery, you’ll be able to see the last location that they were connected to your iPhone. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to identify their exact location unless they have power.
Is there a way to find a lost or stolen AirPods case?
Unfortunately, there is no way to locate a stolen or lost AirPods case, unless the AirPods are placed inside the charging case and are no further than 40ft away.