Apple has started rolling out a new firmware version for AirPods which offers a pretty nice improvement to premium models. Version 4A400 is a free update that will allow AirPods Pro and AirPods Max owners a much better chance of finding the headphones if lost.
That’s because those devices can now finally integrate fully with Apple’s impressive Find My network. This is a feature that was shown off back at WWDC in June but didn’t make the cut in time for the initial release of iOS 15 – but now it’s here.
Previously, if you used the Find My app to search for lost AirPods it would simply show the last known location when the pods were on with Bluetooth fired up. Now, though, AirPods Pro and AirPods Max can utilize a network of Apple devices used by millions of people all over the world to ‘ping’ the accessories to track them down.
This additional locational awareness makes it easier to track down a general area, and when you get close enough with an iPhone or iPad the AirPods should auto-connect for precise location tracking.
Users of second-generation non-Pro AirPods will get this update too, though it’s not clear if any new features have been added. Apple doesn’t release update logs for these accessories, though it’s likely to be a case of a few security improvements or performance tweaks.
Not sure which firmware your AirPods are running? Simply head to Settings > Bluetooth and tap the i button next to your AirPods. Your current firmware will be listed at the bottom next to Version. Remember this latest version is called 4A400.
Unfortunately, unlike with the iPhone and iPad, it’s not possible to manually initiate a firmware update on your AirPods. But you can make sure they’re ready to receive it by keeping them in a plugged-in charging case close to a paired iPhone or iPad. That should kick things off.