Which AirPods Do I Have? How To Identify AirPods (2024)

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When it comes to Apple’s AirPods, they have become a popular and must-have accessory for many iPhone users. But with the different generations and models available, it can sometimes be confusing to determine which AirPods you have. Whether you’re looking to sell your AirPods, troubleshoot a specific issue, or simply satisfy your curiosity, identifying your AirPods is an essential first step.

In this article, we will guide you through the process of identifying your AirPods. From the design and physical features to the software compatibility and serial number, we will cover all the key factors that can help you determine which AirPods you own. So, let’s dive in and discover how you can easily identify your AirPods in 2023.

Inside This Article

  1. How to Identify AirPods (2023)
  2. Frequently Asked Questions
  3. Physical Characteristics
  4. Serial Number Lookup
  5. Software Compatibility
  6. Packaging and Accessories
  7. Conclusion
  8. FAQs

How to Identify AirPods (2023)

If you own AirPods or are considering purchasing a pair, it’s important to know how to identify them. With different models and generations available, it can be confusing to determine which AirPods you have. In this article, we will guide you through the process of identifying AirPods so that you can make informed decisions and take full advantage of their features.

1. Physical Characteristics

The first step in identifying your AirPods is to examine their physical characteristics. The design of the AirPods has evolved over the years, and each generation has its own distinct features.

Start by looking at the shape and size of your AirPods. The original AirPods (1st generation) have a more elongated shape compared to the AirPods Pro and AirPods (2nd generation). The AirPods Pro have a shorter stem and come with different-sized silicone ear tips.

Next, check the case. The original AirPods case is slim and rectangular, while the AirPods Pro case has a wider and squatter design. The LED indicator light on the front of the case also differs between generations, with the AirPods Pro having a smaller, more discreet light.

2. Serial Number Lookup

If examining the physical characteristics doesn’t provide a clear answer, you can use the serial number lookup method to identify your AirPods. Every pair of AirPods has a unique serial number, which can be found on the charging case or the original packaging.

To find the serial number on the charging case, open the lid and locate the text on the inside of the case. The serial number will be printed there. If you have the original packaging, you can also find the serial number on the barcode label.

Once you have the serial number, you can visit Apple’s official website and use their online tool to determine the model and generation of your AirPods.

3. Software Compatibility

Another way to identify your AirPods is by checking their software compatibility. Different models of AirPods are compatible with specific software versions, which can give you a clue about their generation.

For example, the original AirPods (1st generation) supported up to iOS 12, while the AirPods Pro and AirPods (2nd generation) require at least iOS 13 or later for full functionality. You can check the software version on your iPhone or iPad by going to Settings > General > About and scrolling down to the “Software Version” section.

4. Packaging and Accessories

If you still can’t determine the exact model and generation of your AirPods, you can refer to the packaging and accessories. The packaging of each AirPods model will have different labeling and imagery that can help identify them.

Additionally, pay attention to the accessories included with your AirPods. The original AirPods came with a standard charging case, while the AirPods Pro and AirPods (2nd generation) come with a wireless charging case as the default option. The presence of wireless charging capabilities can be a strong indicator of the model you have.

By considering the physical characteristics, checking the serial number, software compatibility, and examining the packaging and accessories, you should be able to identify the model and generation of your AirPods with ease.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I use the same method to identify AirPods Pro?

Yes, the same methods mentioned in this article can be used to identify AirPods Pro as well. Pay attention to the physical characteristics, check the serial number, consider the software compatibility, and examine the packaging and accessories.

2. What if my AirPods don’t have a serial number?

If your AirPods don’t have a visible serial number, it could indicate that they are counterfeit or imitations. It’s important to purchase AirPods from authorized retailers to ensure their authenticity and quality.

3. Can I upgrade my AirPods to a newer model?

Yes, you can upgrade your AirPods to a newer model if you wish. Apple frequently releases new generations of AirPods with improved features, so you can consider selling your current pair and investing in the latest model.

4. How can I clean my AirPods?

To clean your AirPods, gently wipe them with a soft, lint-free cloth. Avoid using liquid cleaners or submerging them in water. You can also clean the charging case using a slightly damp cloth. Be sure to dry both the AirPods and the case thoroughly before using them again.

Physical Characteristics

When trying to identify the model of your AirPods, one of the easiest and most straightforward methods is by examining their physical characteristics. Each AirPods model has distinct design features that can help you determine which version you have.

The first generation AirPods, also known as AirPods 1, have a sleek and streamlined design. They feature a long stem, unique shape, and a dangling microphone on the exterior of each earbud.

The second generation AirPods, or AirPods 2, are similar in appearance to the first generation but come with some notable updates. They look nearly identical to their predecessors, but they offer faster connectivity, an optional wireless charging case, and the Hey Siri feature without needing to tap the AirPods.

AirPods Pro, on the other hand, have a more distinct appearance compared to the previous models. They have a shorter stem with a squatter and wider body. Additionally, they come with customizable silicone ear tips for a more secure and comfortable fit, as well as active noise cancellation capabilities.

Finally, AirPods Max, Apple’s over-ear headphones, have a completely different design. They have a luxurious and premium look with large ear cups and a mesh headband, providing a comfortable fit over the ears for extended listening sessions.

By carefully examining the physical characteristics of your AirPods, you can easily determine which model you have. However, if the physical appearance is not clear, there are other methods to identify your AirPods.

Serial Number Lookup

If you want to determine the specific model of your AirPods, you can use the serial number lookup method. Each pair of AirPods is assigned a unique serial number that provides important information about the product. Here’s how you can find and use the serial number to identify your AirPods:

1. Open the lid of your AirPods case.

2. Go to the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.

3. Tap on “Bluetooth” and make sure your AirPods are connected.

4. Locate your AirPods in the list of connected devices and tap the “i” icon next to it.

5. Scroll down, and you will see the serial number listed under the “About” section.

Once you have the serial number, you can use Apple’s official website to look up the model and other details of your AirPods. Visit the Apple Check Coverage website and enter the serial number in the provided field. Apple will then display the information about your AirPods, including the model, warranty status, and date of purchase.

Using the serial number lookup method is a reliable way to identify your AirPods and ensure you have the correct information about your device. It can be particularly useful if you are purchasing AirPods from a third party and want to verify the authenticity and model before making the purchase.

Software Compatibility

When it comes to determining which AirPods you have, software compatibility can be a valuable clue. Each generation of AirPods is designed to work with specific software versions, so checking the software compatibility can help narrow down the possibilities.

If you have an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you can check the software version by going to Settings, then General, and selecting About. Look for the “Software Version” or “iOS” section to find the version number.

For Mac users, click on the Apple menu, then select About This Mac. The software version will be displayed under the macOS section.

Once you have determined the software version, you can refer to Apple’s official website or documentation to see which AirPods are compatible with that particular software version. Apple often releases updates that introduce new features and improvements, and these updates may require specific AirPods models.

It’s worth noting that older AirPods may still work with newer software versions, but they may not be able to take advantage of all the latest features and functionalities. Therefore, it’s essential to consider both the software compatibility and the desired features when identifying your AirPods.

In addition, it’s a good idea to keep your devices up to date with the latest software to ensure optimal performance and compatibility with your AirPods. Regularly checking for software updates and installing them can provide you with the best user experience.

Packaging and Accessories

When it comes to identifying your AirPods, examining the packaging and accessories that came with them can provide valuable clues. Apple is known for paying attention to detail, and their packaging is no exception. Here are some key things to look for:

1. Branding and Labels: Take a close look at the box that your AirPods came in. It should bear the unmistakable Apple logo and the product’s name. Additionally, you might find labels or stickers with barcodes or serial numbers on the outer packaging.

2. Charging Case Design: Depending on the specific model of AirPods you have, the design of the charging case may differ. The first-generation AirPods come with a charging case that is slightly taller and wider than the subsequent versions. The second-generation AirPods and AirPods Pro feature a more compact and square-shaped charging case.

3. Cable and Power Adapter: The accessories that accompany your AirPods can also provide clues about the model you have. The first-generation AirPods typically come with a Lightning to USB cable and a USB power adapter. In contrast, the second-generation AirPods and AirPods Pro might come with a USB-C to Lightning cable and a USB-C power adapter.

4. Documentation: Don’t overlook the included documentation. Apple usually includes a quick start guide and warranty information specific to the model of AirPods you have purchased. Pay attention to any printed or digital materials that give insight into the features and specifications of your AirPods.

5. Additional Accessories: Depending on the model or bundle you purchased, there might be additional accessories enclosed. For example, some AirPods Pro packages include different sizes of ear tips or a wireless charging case. These additional accessories can help confirm the specific model you own.

By carefully examining the packaging and accessories that came with your AirPods, you should be able to gather valuable information about the model and version you own.


Identifying your AirPods is crucial in order to ensure compatibility with accessories and troubleshoot any issues that may arise. The three main generations of AirPods – AirPods 1st Generation, AirPods 2nd Generation, and AirPods Pro – can be differentiated by their physical features and the presence of certain functionalities.

By examining the charging case, checking for removable ear tips, and verifying the presence of active noise cancellation and transparency modes, you can easily determine which AirPods you own. This knowledge will allow you to choose accessories that are specifically designed for your AirPods, enhancing their functionality and style.

Remember, AirPods continue to evolve and new generations may be released in the future. Staying up-to-date with the latest information will help you make informed decisions regarding your AirPods and their accessories.

So, next time you find yourself wondering, “Which AirPods do I have?” just follow the guidelines mentioned in this article, and you’ll be able to identify your AirPods with confidence.


1. How can I identify which AirPods I have?
To identify which AirPods you have, you can check the model number on the charging case. The model number is usually printed on the underside of the lid or on the back of the case. You can also find the model number in your device’s settings. For iPhone users, go to “Settings” > “General” > “About” > “AirPods”. Android users can check the model number in their Bluetooth settings under the connected devices section.

2. What are the different generations of AirPods?
There are currently three generations of AirPods: AirPods (1st generation), AirPods (2nd generation), and AirPods Pro. The 1st generation AirPods were released in 2016, the 2nd generation AirPods with wireless charging case in 2019, and the AirPods Pro in late 2019. Each generation offers different features and improvements, so it’s important to know which generation you have for compatibility and functionality purposes.

3. Can I use AirPods accessories with all generations of AirPods?
Yes, most AirPods accessories are compatible with all generations of AirPods, unless specified otherwise. However, it’s important to note that some accessories may be designed specifically for a certain generation or model, so it’s always a good idea to check the compatibility information provided by the manufacturer before making a purchase.

4. Are AirPods accessories necessary?
AirPods accessories are not necessary, but they can enhance your overall AirPods experience. Accessories such as protective cases, ear tips, charging stands, and straps can add convenience, personalization, and protection to your AirPods. They can also improve the fit, comfort, and sound quality of your AirPods, depending on the accessory you choose.

5. Where can I buy AirPods accessories?
You can buy AirPods accessories from various sources, including Apple’s official website and retail stores, authorized resellers, and online marketplaces such as Amazon. There are also specialized retailers that focus on selling accessories for electronic devices, including AirPods. Make sure to read customer reviews, check for genuine products, and compare prices to find the best options for your needs and budget.