How to Connect Two Airpods to One Phone Simultaneously

One iPhone with two pairs of AirPods
One iPhone with two pairs of AirPods

The days of sharing earbuds are over. Here’s how you and your friend can connect two pairs of AirPods to one phone at the same time.

Ever wanted to listen to music with your friend during a long commute without playing it through your phone speakers? While using one earbud each is a solution, it’s frustrating to only hear one channel of audio.

Not to mention, sharing earbuds isn’t the most hygienic way to listen together. The thought of where your friend’s earbud has been before you put it in your ear is enough to make anyone recoil with hesitation.

Introducing the Audio Sharing feature by Apple. This feature allows you and a friend to listen to the same music or watch the same movie on a single device with two sets of earbuds. And we’re going to take a look at how this feature works and how to connect two AirPods to one phone right in this article.

One iPhone with two pairs of AirPods
One iPhone with two pairs of AirPods

Apple’s Audio Sharing Feature

Apple has always been praised for the refinement of its technology and associated features. Everything just works. They’ve even found a way for you to find your AirPods if you lose them. There’s no doubt that they’re always looking for ways to improve your quality of life when it comes to their products.

And one of those improvements is the Audio Sharing feature. This feature was introduced in iOS 13. It allows you to connect another pair of wireless headphones in addition to your current ones – similar to how a splitter works with wired headphones. This lets you and another person to listen to music or watch videos without sharing the same pair of headphones.

This feature, however, doesn’t work on all devices. In order to use it, you need a compatible Apple device on iOS 13, or later that supports at least Bluetooth version 5.0. Such as:

  • iPhone 8 or later
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation) or later
  • iPad Pro 11-inch
  • iPad Pro (10.5-inch)
  • iPad Air (3rd generation)
  • iPad mini (5th generation)
  • iPad (5th generation) or later
  • iPod touch (7th generation)

In addition to your Apple device, you also need a pair of headphones that can support this feature. Here’s a list of the compatible devices:

How to Connect Two Airpods to One Phone

Let’s look at how you can connect two pairs of headphones to a single compatible Apple device. This will work for Airpods, Airpods Pro, Airpods Max, and Beats.

  1. Ensure that your headphones are connected first. Once connected, tap the AirPlay Audio button in your Control Center.

    Accessing the Control Center. (From: YouTube/Daniel About Tech)
    Accessing the Control Center. (From: YouTube/Daniel About Tech)

  2. Then, tap Share Audio. Select the second pair of headphones you want to connect to and select Share Audio again.
If you’re connecting AirPods or AirPods Pro’s, hold them next to your device with the case list open. If they’re Beats, put them into pairing mode and hold them close to the device.
Sharing the audio with Beats headphones. (From: YouTube/Daniel About Tech)
Sharing the audio with Beats headphones. (From: YouTube/Daniel About Tech)

Once connected, audio played from your Apple device will output to both pairs of headphones. You can also control the volume levels for both from your phone. Let’s take a look at that next.

How to Adjust the Volume and Noise Controls

When your two pairs of headphones are paired to the device, you’ll notice that you have the option to control the volume and noise controls for both. You can find these controls in the Control Center pull-down from the top of your screen and your lock screen. Here’s how:

  1. In the Control Center, the two volume sliders will allow you to raise or lower the volume for each pair of headphones. Above that, you’ll have the option to pause/play your tracks.

    Music and volume controls. (From: YouTube/Zollotech)
    Music and volume controls. (From: YouTube/Zollotech)

  2. Outside of that, in the swipe menu, you can press and hold the volume slider. This will present two individual sliders, one for each pair.

    Individual volume controllers. (From: YouTube/Zollotech)
    Individual volume controllers. (From: YouTube/Zollotech)

Outside of the control center, you can pause/play music or videos inside the app that’s playing them.

How to Stop Audio Sharing

The Audio Sharing feature is designed to be temporary. Because of that, Apple has made it super simple to disconnect the second pair of headphones from your device.

  1. Access the AirPlay section from your Control Panel.
  2. Tap on the tick next to the device you want to disconnect. This will cause it to disconnect.

    Disconnecting a secondary device. (From: YouTube/AppleInsider)
    Disconnecting a secondary device. (From: YouTube/AppleInsider)

Bonus: How to Share Audio Using Two iPhones

Instead of pairing to your friend’s headphones, you can instead connect to their iPhone. When connected to their iPhone, audio will still be shared through their iPhone to their connected AirPods or Beats headphones.

This method is much easier and super useful, especially for those who’re sharing a commute and don’t want to mess around trying to pair their specific type of headphones. You and your friend can share the same tracks in just a few simple steps without taking off your headphones.

Again, for this to work, both devices need to be running iOS 13 or above.
  1. In the Control Center, tap on the AirPlay Audio icon.

    Accessing the AirPlay menu. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)
    Accessing the AirPlay menu. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)

  2. Tap Share Audio.

    Sharing audio. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)
    Sharing audio. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)

  3. Put your friend’s iPhone near yours. A dialogue window will appear. Tap Share Audio.

    Sharing audio with another device. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)
    Sharing audio with another device. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)

  4. On your friend’s iPhone, tap the Join button.

    Accepting the invitation on the second device. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)
    Accepting the invitation on the second device. (From: YouTube/Apple Support)

When paired, both devices will be visible in your AirPlay menu. Each device’s volume can be controlled from your device using individual sliders.

The volume for each pair of headphones can also be controlled independently using on-ear controls.

Conclusion

No longer will you miss out on the basic functionality of a headphone splitter with Apple’s Audio Sharing feature. You and a friend can now listen to the same music and watch the same videos without sacrificing an earbud.

What do you think about this feature? Could it be done better, or do you think Apple has nailed it already? Let us know in the comments below!

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