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AirPods Unboxing and Setup: First Look at Apple’s Wireless Headphones

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Initial online orders of Apple AirPods have started arriving today for those who were lucky enough to get their orders in quickly. Those who did not get their orders in within the first 30 minutes of launch will have to wait until the end of January to receive their shipment. Customers can try their chances at the Apple Store, however, given today’s reports and feedback, there doesn’t seem to be much stock of the AirPods in the company’s retail stores.

I was pleasantly surprised to come home and see a package on my porch, which meant the AirPods came one day sooner than expected. I’ve been testing out the device for the last few hours and I would like to share my first look of Apple’s long-awaited wireless headphones.

As with all Apple products, the AirPods were a joy to unbox. The minimalistic packaging wonderfully showcases the product. Apple even added a nice touch of having the AirPods picture on the front of the box pop out, which gives a nice 3D effect and a cool texture to the packaging.

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Inside the packaging, Apple includes the standard getting started guide and regulatory information, the AirPods inside their case, and a lightning cable to charge the case. The AirPods came with about 80 percent charge when I first opened them.

Setting up the AirPods with your iPhone could not be easier. With your iPhone unlocked, open the lid of the AirPods case. A screen will then pop up on your iPhone prompting you to connect the headphones to your device. Click the ‘Connect’ button and the AirPods are now connected to your iPhone. At this point, the AirPods are visible by any device that is connected to the same Apple ID.

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Opening the lid of the case at any time when the AirPods are connected to your iPhone shows you the device’s battery life. If you connect the AirPods to your Mac (the same way you connect any other Bluetooth device through System Preferences), the battery life for the AirPods will appear in the Bluetooth menu bar dropdown. An interesting feature is that when you are using only one headphone, the battery life will show for only the headphone you are using (see image below).

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The most annoying thing to me about wearing earphones is that they tend to fall out very easily. Over the past few hours, the AirPods have not fallen out once, even when I deliberately tried to shake around to get them out.

Every time you put the AirPods on they make an audible sound indicating that they are ready for use. Using both AirPods together works seamlessly and there is no noticeable lag between both ear pieces. However, if you only want to use one at a time that works perfectly as well. I would assume that using one ear piece at a time will be the preferred method because this will allow you to charge one while using one.

If you are playing music and you take your headphones out, the music will auto pause. In addition, the headphones only turn on when they are in your ear, thanks to a proximity sensor.

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I have briefly tested the AirPods with music and voice-based applications and overall my experience has been great. With Apple Music and Spotify, the sound quality was just as clear as Apple’s wired EarPods. In a voice call and a FaceTime call, the sound quality was also very good, but there were moments when the recipient said that my voice sounded muffled. However, this could have been due to a poor connection. I also tested the app on Skype and the microphone quality was apparently super crisp and clear.

In addition to these apps, I also tried using Siri by double tapping the headphones while connected to my iPhone and my Mac. Siri was very responsive and was able to hear me clearly in both cases. In the full review, I would like to test the microphone using Siri in a noisier environment to see how well the array microphones work.

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Overall, I have to say the AirPods are quite impressive! They work and sound a lot better than I originally expected. I can definitely see myself using these every day. There are still some questions that remain unanswered, for instance, the battery life. I hope to answer all these questions in a full review of the AirPods. If you have any questions that you would like answered, please feel free to leave a comment below and I will try to incorporate it into a full review or answer it directly.

Did you get your AirPods yet? If so, let us know how you like them in the comments below.

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  • Ray

    I just got mine too and although I am impressed, I was hoping they would fit my ears better than the original Ear Pods. I was hopeful after seeing many reviews of people jumping around with great success. Mine, not so much. They do fall out. I guess I just have those kind of ears. These will definitely get use day to day, but they will not replace my other bluetooth headphones for working out or cycling or what have you. Any major movements cause them to come loose and either fall out, or I can feel them not all the way in and I have to push them back in a bit. I have been looking around for hacks to help them fit better like there were for the Ear Pods, but nothing yet. Maybe in the months to come there will be a little “ear wing” or something I can attach so they stay in better. Don’t get me wrong, I like them and will use them often, but not for anything that requires me to be moving around a lot like working out. Would be nice to have some sort of adjustable ear piece or something like many other bud type headphone.

  • JonathanM

    My order shipped but ups says “tracking not get available”. It has been 50 hours since I got the tracking number. Anyone else with this issue?

  • Nick

    Mine took about 48 hours before any information appeared on UPS’ site. Give it a bit more time, I’m sure it’ll show up soon 🙂

  • Nick

    Thanks for the feedback! 🙂

  • JonathanM

    Thanks so much, I will wait a bit more then

  • KS

    They have those already. Search for Earhoox.

  • I bought a JayBird wireless set of buds (not exactly wireless) a while back. Wish I waited! Does pairing work seamlessly with all devices, or do you still have to forget it on one device to listen to another? If you don’t have to do that, I’ll buy a pair.

  • Ray

    Awesome

  • Ant B

    Tried the both EarHoox, EarSkinz with EarPods and my experience with both is negative. They actually allow more noise in forcing you to turn your music up as apposed to creating a proper seal by barely providing a secure fit. I always went back to not having any silicone pieces.

  • Do they fit any better than the EarPods? Because I’ve found the EarPods to be the most singularly uncomfortable earphones I’ve ever used, and the AirPods don’t look to be any different in that regard. Honestly, hard plastic directly in the ears, how is this even remotely comfortable? I’ve been using ROAM Ropes for my Bluetooth headphones and am quite impressed, but I wouldn’t mind totally wireless buds. I just can’t see these being anything but painful though.

  • Sly C

    Mine did arrive yesterday but they’re a Xmas gift for my SO so I have to wait until the weekend to see how they go. I half hope she’s happy with them otherwise I will inherit them. And that would just be terrible.

  • Brilliant plan 😛

  • Adrian Martinez

    That’s because the shipping label was created, but not in courier hands (scanned), need to wait few more hours

  • Mario Gaucher

    where are my AirPods?!?!? I’ve been waiting all day… and they are not here yet! Scheduled to arrive today according to the UPS tracking… if they don’t arrive today, I will cry my life until tomorrow! 😉

  • Nick

    Nope, you don’t have to forget the device. Just tried this out with an Android phone and another Mac on a different Apple ID. You just have to pair it once manually by holding the button at the back of the AirPods case.

  • Nick

    The in-ear fit of the AirPods are virtually identical to the EarPods. The only difference is that there is no wire which, for me, makes them stay in my ear. If you didn’t like the way the EarPods fit in your ear then you probably won’t like the AirPods either.

  • Well, I guess I’ll be buying a pair!

    Anyone want this JayBird pair I have?

  • Good, my EarPods fit great. So I’m happy the fit will be the same!

  • warpdrive

    The Jaybird X3’s can pair to multiple devices at the same time. $99 in Bestbuys boxing week sale.

  • Mario Gaucher

    I’ve received my AirPods this morning. So far so good…
    One question for those that have them also… AirPods are my first bluetooth headphones… is it normal to have a little static noise when they turn on and no audio is playing?

  • Chrome262

    still prefer the in the ear design of others, like my Earins but then again the connectivity of these is incredible

  • Chrome262

    yeah but do they pair buy putting them next to things lol. I have them as well gave them to my wife, great headphones.

  • Chrome262

    Yeah six weeks, might wait a bit, see if they get stocks up

  • Chrome262

    if i order them and it says six weeks, but stocks increase will they ship sooner?

  • trump

    Whine much?

  • Mario Gaucher

    probably yes…
    I have them now… I’m happy like drug addict that just got his fix.

  • warpdrive

    Nope. So I can rest assured they won’t pair to my wife and daughter iPads and iPhones. Lol.

  • Cornfed710

    Have you come down from that high yet lol ????????????????????????????????????????????????

  • Mario Gaucher

    Haha not really… still running in the same buzz… I’m using them every day…

  • Cornfed710

    That’s great to hear ????

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