Easy fixing AirPods Not Working for Phone Calls.
Do your AirPods work in all other apps besides phone calls and FaceTime calls? The problem may be due to incorrect AirPods microphone settings, low AirPods battery, outdated AirPods firmware, conflict with other Bluetooth devices, etc.
AirPods Not Working for Phone Calls
This post explains why your AirPods are not working for phone calls and how to fix the problem. The troubleshooting in this guide applies to all models of Apple AirPods, from AirPods 1st generation to AirPods 3.
1. Manually Switch to AirPods
If you have multiple Bluetooth headphones connected to your iPhone, iOS can route audio to the newly connected audio device. Switch the output device in the call window or Control Center if the Phone app hasn’t selected your AirPods as the preferred audio device.
Tap the speaker icon in the call window and select your AirPods.
Or open Control Center, tap the AirPlay icon, and select AirPods as your active device.
If your AirPods don’t show up in the device selector, they probably aren’t connected to your iPhone. Place both AirPods in the charging case, reconnect them to your ears and check if they connect to your device.
Go to Settings > Bluetooth and make sure your AirPods status is Connected.
2. Increase Audio Output Volume
Make sure your device’s volume isn’t low or muted, especially if you can’t hear the other person talking during phone calls. Press the volume up button during a call to increase the volume on your AirPods. Or open the AirPlay menu in Control Center, select your AirPods, and drag the volume slider to the right.
If the volume of your AirPods remains unusually low, check out this guide to find out how to make your AirPods louder.
3. Charge Your AirPods
Your AirPods should automatically disconnect from your iPhone/iPad if the batteries are low or empty. If your AirPods remain connected to your device, they may not work for phone calls or other apps.
There are several ways to check your AirPods battery life, but the easiest way to do this is on the AirPlay screen.
Open Control Center, tap the AirPlay icon, and check the battery status of individual AirPods.
We recommend putting your AirPods in a charging case if the battery level is below 10-15%. If the left AirPod is low or empty, put it back in the charging case and use the right AirPod—or vice versa.
4. Change Call Audio Routing Settings
iOS has an “Audio Call Routing” feature that allows users to select the default audio receiver for phone calls and FaceTime calls. By default, iOS automatically redirects calls to the active audio device. If you change your audio routing settings, phone calls and FaceTime calls may use your device’s speaker instead of the default audio device.
Go to Settings > Accessibility > Touch > Audio Call Routing and select Automatic. Select a Bluetooth headset as the default audio source if you want phone call audio to be routed to your AirPods (or any active Bluetooth device).
5. Change AirPods Microphone Settings
If people can’t hear you when making phone calls using one AirPod, it’s probably because your iPhone is set to use the microphone of the inactive AirPod.
Your AirPods have their own microphones. When both AirPods are in your ears, your device automatically uses the microphone in either AirPod. You may have set up your iPhone to use the microphone in one AirPod. This may be why your AirPod is not working for phone calls.
Check your AirPods microphone settings and make sure your device is using the microphone of both AirPods.
Go to Settings > Bluetooth and tap the More Information icon next to your AirPods. Tap Microphone in your AirPods settings and select AirPods auto-switch.
6. Disconnect Other Bluetooth Devices
If too many Bluetooth devices are connected to your iPhone at the same time, this can cause the devices to override your AirPods from time to time. Turn off any active Bluetooth audio devices (except your AirPods) and check if your iPhone is using AirPods for phone calls.
Go to Settings > Bluetooth, tap the Details icon next to the connected device, and select Disconnect.
7. Turn Bluetooth Off and On
This easy troubleshooter is a proven solution to AirPods issues on macOS, iOS, Windows, and Android.
Open the Bluetooth settings menu on your iPhone (Settings > Bluetooth), turn off Bluetooth, wait a few seconds, and turn it back on.
8. Restart Your AirPods
Restarting your AirPods will fix connection issues, audio output issues, and other problems.
Restart your AirPods (1st, 2nd, and 3rd generation) and AirPods Pro.
Image Source: Apple
Place both (left and right) AirPods in the charging cases and close the lid for at least 10 seconds. This will restart the AirPods, refresh their performance, and possibly fix issues causing them to crash. Then plug your AirPods into your ears and check if your device recognizes them during phone calls.
Restart your AirPods Max.
Press and hold the Digital Crown and Noise Control buttons at the same time (for 5-10 seconds) until the status light next to the charging port starts flashing amber.
Note. Do not hold the buttons for more than 10 seconds. Otherwise, you will reset your AirPods Max to factory settings.
9. Reboot Your Phone
Press and hold the side button (or top button for iPad) and any volume button for 2-5 seconds and drag the power off slider to the right.
Or go to Settings > General > Power Off, move the slider to the right, and wait 30 seconds for your iPhone/iPad to turn off completely.
Press and hold the top button (on iPhone) or the side button (on iPad) until the Apple logo appears on the screen. Connect your AirPods to your device and see if they work for phone calls.
10. Reset Your AirPods
The method to reset your AirPods will depend on the model or generation you own. Here are the steps to reset all generations/models of AirPods.
Reset AirPods (1st, 2nd and 3rd generation) and AirPods Pro
Insert both AirPods into the charging case and close the lid.Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad, select Bluetooth, and tap the More Information icon next to AirPods.Tap Forget This Device and select “Forget it.” Your device will be asked to confirm again to continue.You will receive a pop-up notification that if you forget your AirPods, they will also be removed from your iCloud devices. To continue, select “Forget Device”.
The next step is to reconnect the AirPods to your device.
Place your AirPods next to your iPhone or iPad and open the covers of the charging case. Press and hold the setup button on the back of your AirPods case for 10-15 seconds until the status light blinks white.
Unlock your iPhone/iPad, click “Connect” in the pop-up window, and follow the instructions to connect your AirPods.
Make a test call (Cellular, WhatsApp or FaceTime) and see if apps can detect your AirPods.
Reset AirPods Max
Apple recommends that you charge your AirPods Max for a few seconds before resetting them to factory settings.
Press and hold the Digital Crown and Noise Control buttons for 15 seconds until the status LED blinks amber. Keep holding the buttons until the yellow color changes to white.
AirPods Max should now work for phone calls when reconnected to iPhone or iPad.
11. Update Your AirPods’ Firmware
Apple releases new features, performance improvements, and bug fixes to AirPods through firmware updates. AirPods are usually updated a few days after a new firmware is released. But sometimes you need to force an update.
Firmware glitches can be the reason why your AirPods are not working for phone calls. You never know.
To force an update on your AirPods, insert them into the charging case and make sure they hold at least 50% battery power. Then connect your iPhone to a Wi-Fi network and turn off low power mode and low traffic mode.
After that, place your iPhone next to your AirPods (inserted in a case) and leave both devices for at least 30 minutes (or longer). Refer to our AirPods Firmware Update Guide for detailed instructions and troubleshooting how to update your AirPods.
12. Disable Bluetooth for Wearables and Smart Gadgets
Third party apps for wearables and smart gadgets can disrupt the Bluetooth connection of your AirPods. In this Apple discussion thread, some iPhone users who were unable to make calls through AirPods fixed the issue by turning off Bluetooth for smartwatches and device tracking devices.
Two common culprits are the Fitbit app and the Tile app. If you use any of these apps, check their settings menu and limit or disable Bluetooth connection.
13. Update Your iPhone/iPad
Like firmware updates, iOS updates also come with bug fixes related to audio output/input, phone calls, and Bluetooth connectivity on iPhone and iPad. Update your device’s operating system
Go to Settings > General > Software Update and install any iOS update available for your device.
14. Reset Network Settings
This will update your device’s Bluetooth connections and other network settings. Only perform a network reset if all the troubleshooting solutions above are unsuccessful.
Open Settings, tap General, select Transfer or reset iPhone, tap Reset, select Reset network settings, enter your iPhone’s passcode, and select Reset network settings again.
Fix AirPods Hardware Damage
Contact Apple Support or contact an Apple Authorized Service Provider if your AirPods are still not working for phone calls. Your AirPods may be damaged. Apple can provide you with new AirPods as long as your (faulty) AirPods are still covered by Apple’s one-year limited warranty. Or, if the damage is due to a factory defect.
Easy fixing AirPods Not Working for Phone Calls
Easy fixing AirPods Not Working for Phone Calls