Find my AirPods: How to find lost earbuds with your iPhone

Your guide to hunting down misplaced buds
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Apple AirPods are among the most convenient ways to listen to music and take calls, with the charging case portable enough to slip into your pocket when they're not in use. However, that means they're also easy to lose – even easier than your other gadgets.

Even more annoyingly, finding Apple AirPods can be a real chore, since the earbuds themselves are so small. And what do you do if you lose just one?

Read this: The best wireless earbuds

Well, even if you haven't already lost your AirPods, it's worth knowing how to safeguard against any of these problems. And through the Find My iPhone feature on your iPhone, Apple has given you a way to do exactly that.

How to find lost AirPods

Find my AirPods: How to find lost earbuds with your iPhone

If you have iOS 10.3 (or later) installed, Find My iPhone can help you see where any missing AirPods have got to. And if you have other bits and bobs from Apple that you're connected to your AirPods with, the feature is automatically enabled for your AirPods, as well. Handy.

That means if your earbuds have been stolen, or you've simply forgotten where you last put them, opening up Find My iPhone can locate them on a map. Here's how to go about it, either through iCloud or the app.

On iCloud:

1. Head to iCloud and sign in with the Apple ID associated with your AirPods.

2. Open Find iPhone.

3. Click All Devices, then tap through to AirPods.

On Find My iPhone:

1. Open the Find My iPhone app.

2. Sign in with the Apple ID associated with your AirPods.

3. Tap AirPods.

What to do if your AirPods are offline

Whether you're working from iCloud or the iPhone app, you'll notice a status symbol beside your device that indicates whether your device is on the map (blue), whether they are online (green) or whether they're offline (gray).

If the status symbol is green, that means your AirPods will still feed back live directions on the map and you'll be able to emit a sound for two minutes when you get close to them. If your AirPods are offline, you won't be able to play any sounds, but you will be able to see their location before they ran out of battery. Then, if they do come back online, you'll get a notification on the iOS device you use them with.

AirPods separated? Well, Apple only lets you see one location at a time on the map, so you'll have to find one on the map and then put it back in the case. From there, refresh the map in order to locate the other.

How we test

Conor Allison


Conor moved to Wareable Media Group in 2017, initially covering all the latest developments in smartwatches, fitness trackers, and VR. He made a name for himself writing about trying out translation earbuds on a first date and cycling with a wearable airbag, as well as covering the industry’s latest releases.

Following a stint as Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint, Conor returned to Wareable Media Group in 2022 as Editor-at-Large. Conor has become a wearables expert, and helps people get more from their wearable tech, via Wareable's considerable how-to-based guides. 

He has also contributed to British GQ, Wired, Metro, The Independent, and The Mirror. 

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