If you’re considering buying Apple’s fully wireless AirPods, you’ve probably got a few questions on your mind. Follow along for the answers to the most frequently asked questions to find out if AirPods are right for you.

How much are AirPods?

Apple’s AirPods cost $159. With limited availability (still 6 weeks shipping from Apple) we haven’t seen any retailers offer any discounts. However, you can often find them with much shorter shipping windows from AT&T and other wireless carriers.

While $159 may seem expensive for earphones, AirPods pricing is aggressive when looking at the competition and features like its W1 chip/ease of use, charging case, battery life, and sound quality.

How do AirPods stay in your ears?

AirPods take a one size fits all (or most) approach. The fit is similar to Apple’s EarPods, although without the wire, most people find AirPods to be more secure.

Depending on your ears and what activities you find yourself doing most, you may prefer to use something like EarBuddyz or Earhoox to keep your AirPods firmly in place. For more ideas on how to get the most out of AirPods, read Hands on with the best AirPods accessories.

Black Earhoox on AirPods with black Podskinz charging case cover

Black Earhoox shown with black Podskinz charging case cover

How to charge AirPods?

AirPods charge by placing them back in the included charging case (which have a satisfying magnetic click). The charging case battery has the capacity to charge AirPods multiple times, Apple states you can get up to 24 hours of listening time between the AirPods and the charging case.

On a single charge, AirPods are rated to get up to 5 hours of playback or 2 hours of talk time. You can also get 3 hours of listening time and 1 hour of talk time by placing your AirPods in the charging case for 15 minutes. The charging case charges via an included Lightning cable.

You can quickly see the battery level of your AirPods and the charging case on your iPhone by flipping the case lid open (seen in the image below).

How do AirPods work?

AirPods work via Bluetooth, however Apple has packed a lot more technology into these earphones to make the user experience effortless. At the heart of AirPods is Apple’s custom W1 chip and you’ll also find optical sensors and motion accelerometers for detecting when they’re in your ears.

Because of these features, AirPods offer one tap setup for Apple devices, they’re automatically on and connected when you take them out of the charging case, will auto-pause music when you take one out of your ear, and more. Apple has really removed the pain points associated with most Bluetooth earphones/devices.

How to set up AirPods?

Setting up AirPods for the first time is a snap.

  1. Make sure your iPhone is unlocked and Bluetooth is turned on
  2. Hold the AirPods charging case close to your iPhone and open the lid
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions

How do AirPods sound?

This will come down to personal preference, however I find AirPods’ sound quality to be on par with other Bluetooth earphones I’ve used. For being fully wireless and quite compact in size, they put out a well-balanced sound, and even have decent lows. I prefer to use EarBuddyz or Earhoox like mentioned above as they create more of an in-ear style fit, improving sound quality in addition to a better ear fit.

Keep in mind AirPods’ sound quality won’t compete with most over the ear headphones, but the trade-off of getting super compact, fully wireless earphones with solid battery life and a seamless user experience will likely be worth it.

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