Apple devices like the Apple Watch and AirPods Pro work very well with other iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad.
They are generally quite easy to set up, and you can make a lot of adjustments to the way the devices operate when you are using them with your smartphone or tablet.
While you may have already discovered the noise cancellation and transparency mode settings for the AirPods when you tap the “i” button next to the AirPods in the Bluetooth menu, you might be wondering if it’s possible to take advantage of the noise cancellation if you only wear one AirPod.
Luckily, aside from the various audio quality and long press settings that you noticed already, there is an accessibility feature where you can use the noise cancellation feature if you are only wearing one of Apple’s earbuds.
How to Enable Noise Cancellation When Only Wearing a Single AirPod
- Open Settings.
- Choose Accessibility.
- Tap AirPods.
- Turn on Noise Cancellation with one AirPod.
Our guide continues below with additional information on using noise cancelling with Apple’s AirPods when you are using just one earbud, including pictures of these steps.
Can I Use Noise Cancellation if I Only Wear One AirPod? (Guide with Pictures)
The steps in this article were performed on an iPhone 13 in the iOS 15.4.1 operating system. I have already connected AirPods Pro to this iPhone.
If you have not done this then you may not see the AirPods setting on the Accessibility menu, so you may need to set up the AirPods first.
Step 1: Tap the Settings app on your iPhone Home screen.
Step 2: Scroll down and select the Accessibility option from the menu.
Step 3: Touch the AirPods button in the Physical and Motor section of the menu.
Step 4: Tap the button to the right of Noise Cancellation with One AirPod to turn it on.
You will know that the setting is enabled when you see green shading around the button. I have it turned on in the picture below.
Our tutorial continues below with additional discussion about the AirPods pro noise cancellation feature and using it when you are only wearing a single AirPod Pro.
More Information on Adjusting iPhone AirPod Settings to Use Active Noise Cancellation
The steps above assume that you have already set up your AirPods with your iPhone.
If not, you simply need to hold the AirPod case near your iPhone, open the lid, then follow the steps on the screen to pair them.
The AirPods operate off Bluetooth technology, and they are configured to easily sync with Apple devices like the iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch. However, you can also pair them with other non-Apple devices. You simply need to hold down the button on the case to put the AirPods into pairing mode.
We have referenced the AirPods pro settings on the Bluetooth menu above, but you may not have gone in there to see what your options are. These are the settings you will see when you go to Settings > Bluetooth > and tap the small “i” info button next to your AirPods Pro:
- Noise Control – You can select between Noise Cancellation, Off, or Transparency.
- Press and Hold AirPods – You can tap the Left or Right option, then choose what happens when you tap and hold on the indicated AirPod. the AirPods have a force sensor inside of them that allows them to sense when you are touching them so that you can touch the AirPods and make certain controls occur.
- Ear Tip Fit Test – this helps you test the fit of your AirPod ear tips so that you can get better sound quality whether you are using them in one ear or both ears.
- Automatic Ear Detection
- Connect to this iPhone – all of the audio from your iPhone will be routed to the AirPods once they are connected if you choose the “Automatically” option.
- Microphone – choose which AirPod’s microphone you use when you make calls.
- Optimized Battery Charging
- Find My Network
- Information about the AirPods like model name, model number, serial number, and version.
- Warranty information
- Forget this Device
All of these different settings, and the ability to customize or enable ANC (active noise cancellation) is one of the best features that you gain when you switch from your current headphones to the AirPods.
The other settings for your AirPods pro that you will see on this Accessibility menu are:
- Press Speed – this affects the speed at which you need to tap on your AirPod to make the set action occur. You can select between Default, Slower, and Slowest speeds.
- Press and Hold Duration – this affects how long you need to hold on the AirPods for an action to occur. You can select between Default, Shorter, and Shortest.
- Audio Accessibility Settings – this opens another Accessibility menu where you can configure things like Headphone Accommodations, Background Sounds, Mono Audio, Headphone Notifications, audio balance, and more.
- Spatial Audio Head Tracking – you can elect to turn on the Follow iPhone option here if you would like to audio you hear in your AirPods to seem as though they are coming from your phone.
Matthew Burleigh has been writing technology how-to articles and tutorials for over a decade. He has extensive experience in information technology both in small business and as a consultant.
His articles have appeared on dozens of websites and been read millions of times.
He covers many different topics concerning technology, but focuses primarily on smartphones, consumer software, and consumer electronics.