Receiving a new iPhone or iPad as a gift is a wonderful thing, but setting up a new device has historically been a chore. Manually pairing accessories, joining Wi-Fi networks, remembering which password goes with which account, and the ever-increasing steps required to actually use your shiny new toy make up the worst first world problems.
The good news is Apple has acknowledged this pain point and created a dramatically simpler way to pair or upgrade new products including iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and AirPods.
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AirPods and other W1-equipped wireless headphones are by far the easiest to set up. Simply place your new AirPods near your iPhone and confirm that you want to pair the two devices.
Previously pairing Bluetooth headphones required manually entering a discovery mode and following a multi-step process, but AirPods leverage proximity and wireless technology to make the process almost effortless. It’s still possible to use AirPods this way with Android phones and other devices, but AirPods and iPhones just pair together.
- Use Apple’s new Find My AirPods feature in iOS 10.3
- Customize AirPods by changing double-tap functionality and more
- AirPods automatically pair with Apple TV starting with tvOS 11
- View AirPods hardware details, check and update firmware [Video]
Apple TV lets you place your iPhone nearby to automatically add your iTunes, iCloud, and Wi-Fi credentials. Just look for “Set up with Device” when you power on your Apple TV. You can also use Home Screen Sync between multiple Apple TVs to automatically install and arrange your favorite apps between Apple TV (4th-gen) and Apple TV 4K streaming boxes.
Apple seems to have learned a lot of these tricks from Apple Watch setup which has always relied on scanning a spacey orb on your watch screen from your iPhone camera. Apple Watch even prompts you to start this process when the new device is near your iPhone which removes the step of going to the Watch app.
With iOS 11, this setup process comes to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch which makes moving to a new device dramatically easier. Just place your new device near your old device running iOS 11 and let the setup wizard work its magic.
Apple calls this process Quick Start. There are still several steps you should follow to see the process through to completion, but you’ll save time and energy on pecking in your credentials in various fields.
Looking for more information on getting started with your new Apple products? Check out Apple Support for more resources.