How to charge AirPods wirelessly or with a power cable

One of the best features of Apple AirPods is the ability to toss the buds into the MagSafe charging case when the battery gets low. Charge things. Thanks to Apple’s fast charging speeds, you can get an hour of listening time (for AirPods Pro) by simply placing the case in the case for five minutes. You can also store up to 30 additional hours of power in the MagSafe charging case, whereas AirPods only offer 5 to 6 hours of battery life when fully charged.


  • Charge AirPods using a wired power connection
  • Wirelessly charge AirPods
  • Use a wireless charger

Like the AirPods themselves, the MagSafe case’s battery can drain. Until then, though, you can charge the case using a Lightning USB cable, USB-C (if you happen to have the latest AirPods Pro), or wireless charging (in some cases). Here’s how to charge AirPods.

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Charge AirPods using a wired power connection

If your AirPods model (such as early 1st and 2nd generation versions) didn’t come with a wireless charging case (or you didn’t upgrade), or you don’t use the wireless charging feature on later models, you’ll use a cable to connect to your AirPods or AirPods Pro charging box charges, and then the charging box charges AirPods. That’s it.

Step 1: Insert AirPods into the charging case.

Various AirPods come with a charging case that stores and protects the earbuds while also charging the battery. Your first step should always be to put your AirPods back into the charging case.

Each charging case is designed for AirPods to lock inside in a specific way: earlier cases had the speaker tips facing outward, while the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro have the speakers facing each other. This should be very obvious when your AirPods are inserted the correct way, and the status light should flash every time the AirPods are placed correctly.

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The exception is the AirPods Max, which are over-ear headphones without a charging case. You can skip this step and find the charging connection directly on your AirPods Max.

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Step 2: Connect the charging case to a power source using a Lightning cable

Look at the bottom of the AirPods case and you’ll see a Lightning port, or in the case of the latest AirPods Pro, its new USB-C port. This is how you charge the charging case when necessary. Once you’ve connected your AirPods to a mobile Apple device, you should be able to open the charging case near that device and immediately see notifications about the current battery life of each AirPod and the charging case itself – if you’re wondering when it’s time to charge, this will It is very convenient to top up in advance.

Apple AirPods Pro with USB-C.
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Step 3: Your AirPods are equipped with a Lightning to USB port, or AirPods Pro now come with a USB-C cable for charging. You can connect this cable to any compatible adapter (although Apple’s own adapter is highly recommended) or to a USB port on your computer. Connect the Lightning or USB-C end to the charging case and it will start charging.

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Wirelessly charge AirPods

Can Airpods be charged wirelessly? This depends on the type of case you have. For the first-generation AirPods, the charging case that came with that model didn’t support wireless charging, so you had to use a cable. With the AirPods 2, some versions don’t have wireless charging, and some upgrade to a wireless charging case (which is usually an option when buyers buy directly from Apple), so you’ll have to check which version you’re buying. If you have AirPods 3 or AirPods Pro, all versions come with a wireless charging case, including the latest USB-C AirPods Pro 2.

You also have the option to purchase the wireless charging case separately for the first-generation AirPods and AirPods 2, allowing you to upgrade to this feature. You can’t currently buy a separate wireless charging case for AirPods Pro.

Now all you need is a wireless charger.

How to charge airpods wireless charger
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Use a wireless charger

If you have a wireless charging case, you need a Qi standard wireless charger. The good news is that most wireless chargers on the market use the Qi standard, so you can choose the model you want.

Apple has its own MagSafe charger that’s compatible with AirPods cases, and there are plenty of other great options from Belkin, Logitech, and other brands. Many even incorporate wireless charging docks for iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods so you can charge them all in one place.

Additionally, the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2 charging cases work with the Apple Watch charger.

Step 1: Once you have the wireless charging pad, plug it into an electrical outlet and place the AirPod charging case directly on top of it, with the front/indicator lights facing out. You should be able to tell when the charging case starts charging because the indicator light will come on and stay on.

If you’re wondering “How do I charge the AirPods Pro Wireless Charging Case?” — don’t worry: all of these steps apply to AirPods Pro as well, albeit with a slightly different case design.

Step 2: Observe the charging status indicator light for more information

Each AirPods charging case has an indicator or status light that lets you know the charging status at any time. For non-wireless original charging cases, the status light is inside, so you have to turn it on. All other chassis status lights are located on the outside of the front of the chassis.

When the case indicator light turns amber, it means there is insufficient power remaining and needs to be charged. To check the status of charging via a wired or wireless charging pad, open the charging case to check the status light. When it lights up green, it means the charging case is fully charged.

If you’re looking to upgrade your AirPods experience, you should also read our complete guide to the best AirPods accessories you can get right now, from new charging options to earbuds, cases, and more.

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