How to Connect AirPods to Apple TV: The Only Guide You’ll Need

Using AirPods with Apple TV
Using AirPods with Apple TV

We explore the fastest and most efficient ways to pair AirPods to Apple TV so you can watch movies without disturbing others.

We’re all familiar with how you can connect AirPods and iPhones within seconds. But that’s not always the case for their less popular and non-daily driver products like the Apple TV.

While they’re still within the same ecosystem, Apple TV doesn’t have the same pop-up pairing prompt that helps you pair both devices in the blink of an eye.

For users unfamiliar with the pairing process and the prerequisites for initiating it, it can be challenging to pair AirPods to Apple TV. Lucky for you, we’ll show you how you can all the possible methods you can do just that in just a few minutes. Let’s dive right in!

How to Connect AirPods to Apple TV: The Quickest Method

Connecting your AirPods or AirPods Pro to an Apple TV is quite easy, especially if you’ve paired them with another Apple device like an iPhone or iPad.

This is because an Apple TV also has a functionality that allows you to log in to an Apple ID. And, if you use the same Apple ID on your AirPods (through your iPhone) and Apple TV, they will pair automatically.

It’s best to update your AirPods and Apple TV to the latest firmware to avoid any hiccups during the pairing process.

Here’s how you can check if your AirPods and Apple TV have the same Apple ID:

  1. On your Apple TV, go to Home and select Settings.

    Selecting settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/Myiphonesupport)
    Selecting settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
  2. Select Users and Account.

    Selecting Users and Account on Apple TV (From: Youtube/HardReset.Info)
    Selecting Users and Account on Apple TV (From: Youtube/HardReset.Info)
  3. Check the email registered under iCloud account. If it’s not the same account you use on your iPhone, iPad or iPod, they’re not under the same Apple ID and can’t automatically pair. For this, you can simply sign in to the correct iCloud account.

If the account registered on your Apple TV is the same as what’s on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod, here’s how you can start the pairing process:

  1. Open your AirPods’ charging case lid and ensure they have enough battery.

    Holding AirPods Pro in the open charging case
    Holding AirPods Pro in the open charging case
  2. Turn on your Apple TV and go to the Home screen.

    Apple TV Home screen (From: Youtube/TechPriceTV)
    Apple TV Home screen (From: Youtube/TechPriceTV)
  3. Hold the Play/Pause button until the Audio option pops up.

    Play/Pause Button on Apple TV remote
    Play/Pause Button on Apple TV remote
  4. Select your AirPods to start using them as the audio output.

    Selecting AirPods Pro on Apple TV (From: Youtube/TechPriceTV)
    Selecting AirPods Pro on Apple TV (From: Youtube/TechPriceTV)
If your Apple TV and AirPods are under the same Apple ID but won’t pair – you can try resetting your AirPods. Doing so will revert them to factory settings and ensure that your AirPods aren’t connected to other Bluetooth devices.

How to Connect AirPods to Apple TV via Bluetooth

If you’re watching content on someone else’s Apple TV or if it’s registered under a different AppleID, you can still use your AirPods as the audio output device through a standard Bluetooth connection process.

Here’s how you can pair AirPods to Apple TV via Bluetooth:

  1. Place your AirPods inside the charging case, wait for at least 15 seconds, and then open the lid again.
  2. Press and hold the setup button at the back of your AirPods case until the status light flashes white.

    Resetting the AirPods by pressing and holding the setup button
    Resetting the AirPods by pressing and holding the setup button
  3. On your Apple TV, press the Menu button on the remote and go to Settings.

    Going to Apple TV Settings (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
    Going to Apple TV Settings (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
  4. Select Remote and Devices > Bluetooth.

    Accessing list of Bluetooth devices in Apple TV (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
    Accessing list of Bluetooth devices in Apple TV (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
  5. Select your AirPods from the device list and tap Connect Device.

    Connecting to AirPods on Apple TV's Bluetooth list (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
    Connecting to AirPods on Apple TV’s Bluetooth list (From: Youtube/My iphone support)
If your AirPods don’t appear in the devices list, try restarting your Apple TV by going to Settings > System > Restart.

How to Use Two AirPods on Apple TV

Share Audio is a feature on Apple devices that lets you share your Bluetooth audio with a second pair of wireless headphones. This allows you to watch a movie with someone else without disturbing those around you.

Audio Sharing feature is only available on Apple TV 4K with Apple wireless headphones – including all AirPods and several Beats headphones.

For this method to work, you’ll need to follow these conditions:

  • The first pair of AirPods needs to be paired to your Apple TV via Bluetooth or Apple ID.
  • Your second pair of AirPods needs to be connected to an iPhone, iPad, or iPod or be placed close to the Apple TV.

With that out of the way, here’s how you can use the Share Audio feature on your Apple TV:

  1. Press and hold the Home button on your Apple TV remote.

    Home button on Apple TV remote
    Home button on Apple TV remote
  2. Select the AirPlay icon.

    Airplay option on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
    Airplay option on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
  3. Select the first pair of AirPods you want to use, and select Share Audio.

    Share Audio on Apple TV's Airplay (From: Youtube/MA Tech) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3X5dai0_ZI
    Share Audio on Apple TV’s Airplay (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
  4. Bring the second set of AirPods close to the Apple TV.
  5. On the following screen, select Temporarily Share Audio.

    Temporarily share audio option on Airplay (From: Youtube/MA Tech) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3X5dai0_ZI
    Temporarily share audio option on Airplay (From: Youtube/MA Tech)

How to Adjust AirPods Settings on Apple TV

AirPods can work seamlessly with Apple TV since they are within the same Apple ecosystem. But there are a few features that won’t work. For instance, as of writing this article, you can’t talk to Siri through your AirPods while using them with an Apple TV.

However, you can still enjoy essential AirPods control features like double tap to pause/play and automatic in-ear detection. You also still get two other audio-related features: Spatial Audio and active-noise cancelation (ANC) with your Apple TV.

The Spatial Audio enables head tracking to simulate surround sound, whereas the ANC blocks out surrounding noises for better immersion while watching movies or playing tunes on Apple Music.

Here’s how you can configure the Spatial Audio and ANC on your AirPods:

  1. Pair your AirPods to your Apple TV via Bluetooth or Apple ID.
  2. Press the Home button on your Apple TV remote to open the control center.

    Using the remote to go to Apple TV's Home screen
    Using the remote to go to Apple TV’s Home screen
  3. Select the headphones icon next to the AirPlay icon.

    Going to AirPods' Settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
    Going to AirPods’ Settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
  4. Adjust the Spatial Audio and noise cancellation settings to your liking.

    AirPods' Spatial and noise cancellation settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
    AirPods’ Spatial and noise cancellation settings on Apple TV (From: Youtube/MA Tech)
You’ll get Spatial Audio and ANC features on AirPods Pro, Airpods Max, and Beats Fit Pro. The Third-Gen AirPods have Spatial Audio but no ANC.

Conclusion

Since they belong to the same Apple universe, AirPods can pair and work seamlessly with all Apple TV models. Just make sure your earbuds and Apple TV are updated to their latest firmware version before you try to pair them!

Hopefully, you should now be enjoying your movie or video on Apple TV without disturbing anyone around you.

Did you manage to connect your AirPods to Apple TV with no issue? Or did we miss any pairing methods? Let us know in the comments!

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