It can really bum you out to lose your AirPods case.
Without it, you’re pretty much out of luck once your AirPods run out of battery. The case isn’t just for charging, you also need it to reset and sync your AirPods with your devices.
I recall helping a buddy of mine move. Once we were all set up in his new place, he freaked out because he couldn’t find his AirPods case anywhere.
We ended up finding it after a bit of cleanup and backtracking.
In this article, I’m going to walk you through how to find your lost AirPods case, and give you tips to prevent misplacing it in the future.
The Clever Fix
If the AirPods are in the case, track it using the Find My app. If the case is empty, you’ll need to search the AirPods case in the old-fashioned way.
Can you find a lost AirPods case?
Yes, it’s possible, but much easier if one or both of your AirPods are in the case.
The Find My app can lend a hand if your AirPods are in the case. But the app can’t help much if both AirPods are out of the case. If you’re in that predicament, you’re going to have to search for the case the old-fashioned way.
How to find an AirPods case (with one or both AirPods inside)
Use the Find My app
If at least one of your AirPods is in the case, it might be easier to locate your lost case.
Apple’s Find My app can be your best friend in this quest. While the app can track your AirPods, it can’t do the same for the case.
The Find My app is most effective if your AirPods are paired with your phone and tucked inside the case with the lid open. Under such conditions, the app can pinpoint the exact location of your AirPods.
- Open the Find My app.
- Go to the Devices tab.
- Select your AirPods from the list.
- Use Play Sound or Find to locate them.
If your AirPods are tucked away in the case with the lid closed, finding the exact location can be a bit tricky. In that case, The Find My app may only provide the last known location.
Here’s how you can use the Find My app in such a scenario:
- Open the Find My app.
- Go to the Devices tab.
- Tap your AirPods from the list.
- Use Directions to the last known location.
If no one’s picked them up, chances are you’ll find your AirPods and their case right where you left them.
However, if a week’s gone by since the last time their location was updated in Apple’s systems, you won’t be able to track them anymore. Also, if your AirPods are either too far away or out of battery, you might only see “Offline” or “No location found” on the screen.
If you find yourself in that predicament, unfortunately, you’re going to have to hunt for them the old school way.
Why can’t I track a lost empty AirPods case?
An AirPods case isn’t equipped with the ability to send out a signal. It also lacks the Bluetooth feature that would allow it to connect to your phone. According to iFixit’s teardown, an AirPods case is packed with standard chips and nothing more.
In plain English, your AirPods case just doesn’t have the tech to be tracked.
Its job is to charge, reset, and sync your AirPods – that’s it, nothing more.
The only exception to the rule is the new AirPods Pro 2nd Generation case, which can be located using the Find My app, thanks to its U1 chip and built-in speakers. As for older AirPod models, it’s a no-go.
If you’ve misplaced an empty AirPods case, I hate to break it to you, but retrieving it is going to be a pretty tall order.
How to replace a lost AirPods case
Tracking down a lost AirPods case can be like finding a needle in a haystack. If you’ve tried everything and still no luck, it might be time to bite the bullet and purchase a replacement.
The silver lining here is that you don’t have to shell out for a brand new pair of AirPods. You can simply buy a new case.
For those with 2nd Generation AirPods, a standard replacement case will set you back $59 or $79 if you opt for a MagSafe case. If you’re a 3rd Generation AirPod user, a new case costs $79. And for the AirPods Pro folks among us, you’re looking at a $99 price tag.
Sure, it’s not exactly a bargain. But it sure beats buying a whole new pair of AirPods (unless you’re itching for an upgrade).
Can I use a third-party charging case for my AirPods?
Technically, yes, you can go for a third-party charging case. But, I wouldn’t recommend it.
I get it, the lower price tag of a non-Apple charging case can be very tempting.
But it’s a bit of a gamble. There’s no guarantee that it’ll work, and even if it does, it might not be compatible with your original AirPods.
Before buying a third-party case, I’d advise doing some homework first. Look up reviews, watch user videos, and if you can, talk to someone who’s used the product.
In situations like these, it’s always better to err on the side of caution.
Does the Limited Warranty or AppleCare+ cover lost or stolen AirPods cases?
Sadly, no. Neither Apple’s Limited Warranty nor AppleCare+ cover loss or theft of AirPods cases.
The Limited Warranty shields you from manufacturing defects for one year, while AppleCare+ provides cover for two instances of accidental damage every 12 months.
Though there is a Theft and Loss upgrade for AppleCare+, it only applies to iPhones.
So, if your AirPods case ends up MIA, your only real recourse is to purchase a new one.
How to set up a new AirPods case
If you’ve gone ahead and bought a new AirPods case, you’ll need to do a bit of setup before you can start using it.
First things first, you need to disconnect your AirPods from your iPhone and then reconnect them with the new case.
Here’s how you do it:
Head to Settings, open Bluetooth, and find your AirPods on the list. Tap the little “i” symbol next to your AirPods’ name, then select Forget This Device, and hit confirm.
Once you have done that, it’s time to introduce your AirPods to their new home:
- Put your AirPods in their new charging case.
- Open the lid and hang tight until the status light starts flashing amber.
- Press and hold the setup button at the back of the case until the light flashes white.
- With the lid still open, place your new case beside your iPhone.
- On your iPhone’s screen, tap Connect.
- Follow the on-screen prompts.
How to avoid losing your AirPods case
1. Assign a designated pocket or area for storage
One surefire way to minimize the risk of losing your AirPods case is to designate a specific pocket or spot for it.
I, for instance, have a dedicated pocket in my go-to bag for my AirPods case. I’ve also singled out a particular table at home where I leave it when it’s not in use.
It takes a little bit of discipline, but it’s a small price to pay to keep your AirPods case from going AWOL.
2. Practice memory encoding
Ever heard the saying “you only retrieve what you encode?”
Often, when we misplace stuff, it’s because we weren’t really focused when we put them down. Either we’re preoccupied, or just going through the motions of our day without really paying attention.
Usually, we don’t concentrate on the small, routine stuff we’re doing.
A great way to stop this from happening is to be more mindful when you put your AirPods case down. Make a mental note of it.
It can be as simple as telling yourself, “I’m leaving my AirPods case in this corner.”
Once you’ve locked that info in your brain, it’ll be a whole lot easier to recall later.
3. Use an AirPods case cover with a strap
There are tons of AirPods case covers out there. Most of them are designed to cushion your case from falls and keep dirt and dust at bay.
But if you’re looking to prevent your AirPods case from going missing, consider getting a case cover with a strap. This way, you can attach your AirPods case to something and never have to worry about losing it.
It’s a simple and time-tested solution that works like a charm.
4. Buy an AirPods case cover with an AirTag holder
If you’re open to a more high-tech solution, consider getting an AirPods case cover that comes with an AirTag holder. Then, invest in an AirTag for your AirPods case.
The AirTag is a super small, lightweight tracking gadget that looks like a button. Through Bluetooth and Apple’s network of devices, it can relay its location back to you.
Once it’s paired with your iPhone, you can use the Find My app to see where your AirTag (and your AirPods case) is.
Here’s how you set up your AirTag:
- Go to your iPhone’s Home Screen.
- Remove the battery tab from your AirTag.
- Place your iPhone near your AirTag.
- Select Connect when prompted on your iPhone.
- Choose a name from the list or select Custom Name to type a name, select an emoji, then tap Continue.
- Tap Continue to register the item to your Apple ID.
- Tap Finish.
You can find your AirTag in the Items tab on the Find My app.
Losing your AirPods case can be a real pain. It’s frustrating to have your AirPods but not be able to use them because the batteries are dead. And finding a lost AirPods case is not a walk in the park.
While there’s hope of finding your AirPods case if at least one of the AirPods is inside, you can use the Find My app to track down its exact or last seen location.
But if you’ve misplaced an empty AirPods case, you’re going to have to go old school and start retracing your steps.
If you’ve tried everything and still can’t find it, your best bet is to purchase a replacement. The good news is that you don’t have to fork out for a whole new pair of AirPods. Buying a replacement case will do.
To keep from losing your AirPods case again, designate specific places for it and make a conscious effort to remember where you put it. A case cover with a strap or an AirTag holder can also help.
Have you ever lost your AirPods case? Did you manage to find it? Drop a comment below and share your story and thoughts!