How to Fix AirPods ‘Connection Failed’

Some AirPods users are unable to connect them to their iPhone, iPad, and macOS devices. Typically, the connection attempt buffers for a few seconds before the error message ‘Connection Failed‘ appears. This problem is not exclusive to a particular iPad and iPod version.

Airpods Connection Failed Error

When you’re troubleshooting for this particular issue, you should start by trying to force the device where your AirPods are connected to forget the connection. In most cases, this operation is enough to fix the problem for good.

In case you’re encountering the Connection Failed error with a macOS device, start with a simple restart and see if you manage to establish the connection at the next system startup.

In case that doesn’t work and you’re encountering this issue on an iOS device, you should be able to fix the problem by going for a setting refresh (after you back up your data in advance).

If none of the potential fixes above works for you, your only hope at fixing the problem is to connect Apple support (or your warranty issuer) and ask for a complete diagnostics to make sure you’re not dealing with some kind of hardware issue.

Method 1: Forgetting your AirPods

As it turns out, the most popular fix in this particular case is to go over to your iPhone or iPad device settings and forget the AirPods device from the list of saved Bluetooth devices. This potential fix was confirmed to be successful by a lot of users that were previously seeing the ‘Connection Failed‘ error code.

If this scenario is applicable, you should be able to fix this problem by following the instructions below:

  1. First things first, put your Airpoints inside their case, close the lid and wait for at least 30 seconds.
  2. Next, on the device that’s showing the ‘Connection Failed‘ error, go to Settings > Bluetooth and tap on the I (information button) next to your AirPods.
  3. Inside the Bluetooth settings of your Airpods, go ahead and tap on Forget this device, then tap once again to confirm the operation.
    Forgetting the AirPods devices
  4. Once the AirPods devices are forgotten, open the lid of the AirPods case, then press and hold the setup button on the back of the case for 15 seconds or until you see the status LED flashing with a different color.
    Resetting the AirPods via the dedicated button
  5. After the reset procedure is complete, reconnect your AirPods by opening the case lid and placing your AirPods close to your device. Next, follow steps on your device’s screen.

In case this operation still ends up with you seeing the ‘Connection Failed‘ error, move down to the next potential fix below.

Method 2: Restarting your macOS device (if applicable)

In case you’re seeing this error when attempting to connect your AirPods to a macOS computer, the fix should be as simple as performing a regular restart in order to clear any temp files that might cause this problem.

This quick-fix was confirmed to be effective by several different users that were previously encountering the ‘Connection Failed‘ error while attempting to connect their AirPods device.

To perform a simple restart, click on the Apple icon in the top-left corner of the screen, then click on Reset from the newly appeared context menu. At the next prompt, confirm and wait for the next startup to complete.

Restarting the macOS computer

Once you’re macOS computer boots back up, attempt to re-create the connection once again and see if the issue is now resolved.

In case you’re still seeing the same ‘Connection Failed’ error, move down to the next potential fix below.

Method 3: Resetting your Phone (if applicable)

If the first 2 methods didn’t work for you or and you’re encountering this problem on an iPhone device, you might also be dealing with some kind of firmware inconsistency that can only be resolved by performing a phone reset.

This operation was confirmed to be successful by a several affected users that were previously encountering the ‘Connection Failed‘ error.

However, it’s important to ensure that you back up your phone data in advance before initiating the reset procedure so that you don’t lose any personal data.

To make things easier for you, we’ve put together a step-by-step guide that will walk you through the process of backing up your data and resetting your iOS device:

  1. On your iOS device, access the Settings menu, then tap on iCloud from the list of available options.
  2. Next, once you’re inside the iCloud menu, tap on the Backup tab and ensure that the feature is enabled.
  3. Inside the Backup menu, tap on the Back Up Now button, then follow the on-screen instructions to create an up-to-date backup. Then, wait for the operation to complete.
    Backing up your iPhone via iCloud
  4. Once the operation is complete, go to Settings > General, then tap on Reset All Settings from the next menu.
  5. Next, at the confirmation menu, tap on Erase Now, then wait for the operation to complete. During this procedure, your computer will restart.
    Erase now
  6. Once it boots back up, pair your AirPods once again and see if the problem is now resolved.

In case the same problem is still occurring, move down to the next potential fix below.

Method 4: Contacting Apple Support

If none of the potential fixes above have worked for you, you should start considering the fact that you might be dealing with a hardware issue. Some users that were also encountering the ‘Connection Failed‘ error have confirmed that in their case, the problem was being facilitated by a bad Bluetooth device (either on the AirPods or on the device that you’re trying to connect to).

If your device is still under warranty, the best way of mitigating this issue is to get in contact with Apple Support. If their default troubleshooting attempts failed, your device will be subjected to some diagnostics that will reveal any hardware issues that might be causing this problem.

In case the problem is indeed hardware related and you’re still under warranty, you are eligible for an AirPods replace.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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How to Fix AirPods ‘Connection Failed’

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