Found AirPods – Can You Find the Owner? Can You Use Them?
For many iPhone users, AirPods are their headphones of choice. Although the small, wireless AirPods are convenient to use, with little bulk and no wires, they are also pretty easy to lose. Even while in their case, someone may accidentally drop them from a pocket or bag or set them down somewhere and then leave without them. The question is: What can you do if you find them?
There are many related questions you may have, such as:
- Can I contact the AirPods’ owner?
- Can the owner see the AirPods location?
- Can I reset the AirPods and use them?
You may also be interested in the answer to these questions if you yourself are an AirPods owner. If you do own AirPods, make sure you set up Find My on your iPhone and turn on the Find My network.
Can I contact the AirPods’ owner?
Possibly. You may be able to contact the owner of the AirPods. There are a couple of ways if you own an iPhone:
- When your iPhone gets near the AirPods (assuming they are charged), a message should appear on your phone. It usually will just tell you the name of the AirPods and that they are not yours. However, someone may have decided to use their AirPods name, usually something like John’s AirPods, to instead give more information, such as a phone or email.
- Many of the AirPods models can be put into Lost Mode (AirPods (3rd gen), AirPods Pro (1st and 2nd gen), AirPods Max). When this happens, a message should appear on a nearby iPhone. The Lost Mode message should contain contact info.
- You can open Find My on your iPhone and tap on the Items tab. Scroll to the bottom of the Items list and tap Identify Found Item and see if there is any information on the AirPods.
If you are hoping to find the owner of the AirPods, try charging the AirPods and then place your iPhone near the AirPods and check for messages. Check back in a couple of days, too, in case the owner puts the AirPods in Lost Mode.
Can the owner see the AirPods’ location?
Possibly. The AirPods’ owner needs to be using Find My. You may get a notification on your iPhone like the following, which tells you that the owner can see the location of their AirPods:
The following are true about locating AirPods:
- Someone who has lost their AirPods and is using Find My should be able to at least see the last known location.
- For AirPods Pro (2nd gen): The charging case can also be located if it is separated from the AirPods.
- For AirPods (3rd gen), AirPods Pro (1st and 2nd gen), AirPods Max:
- They may be able to be located even if their iPhone isn’t connected to Wi-Fi or cellular.
- The owner can get a “left behind” alert soon after separating from them.
- The AirPods can use the Find My network. This means the AirPods can ping off of nearby Apple Devices to transmit their location to the owner.
- The AirPods can be put into Lost Mode. This means if someone finds the AirPods, a message will appear on their iPhone. This message can contain an email or phone number.
The best thing to do is probably turn them in to the local police. Hopefully, the police can keep them charged so that the owner can track their location. If you are working at a business, school, etc., that has a lost and found, this may also be a good option. If you are just an individual who has taken the AirPods home, you may not want the owner to come to your home.
Can I reset the AirPods and use them?
If you have made efforts to contact the owner of the AirPods and have given them a chance to locate their AirPods, you may wonder if you can just use them yourself.
AirPods can be reset, and you may be able to use them. However, for AirPods (3rd gen), AirPods Pro (1st and 2nd gen), or AirPods Max, the AirPods need to be removed from the owner’s Apple ID before they can be added to a new owner’s Apple ID. This also removes the Find My Lock. This must be done by the AirPods’ owner.
Related AirPods articles
- AirPods Pro Not Showing Up in Find My, How to Fix
- Does AppleCare Cover Lost or Stolen AirPods?
- AirPods Won’t Reset? How to Fix
- Lost your AirPods? How to Find your AirPods & their Case
- How to get an Alert When you Leave your iPhone, iPad, Mac or AirPods Behind
- What does AppleCare+ for AirPods Cover? Is it Worth it?
- Help! My Dog Ate my AirPods