Beats has finally released a truly wireless set of earbuds, and you’ve taken the plunge. But as easy as the Beats Powerbeats Pro are to use, you may not be aware of all of their quirks and features. If you’re going to spend $250 on a new set of earphones, you really should know how to get the most out of them. That’s where we can help. Here are some of the top tips and tricks for using your new Powerbeats Pros — some of which you may know and a few that will surprise you.
Connecting to your iPhone
By now, you’ve probably already figured out how easy it is to pair the Powerbeats Pros to your iPhone, but if not, here’s how that works:
- With your iPhone unlocked, place the Powerbeats Pro charging case next to your phone and open it up,
- Watch the animation that automatically starts on the iPhone, and when it asks, simply tap Connect.
If you’re signed in to iCloud, your Powerbeats Pros will be automatically pre-paired with all of your registered iOS devices.
Connecting to Android phones and other devices
You can use the Powerbeats Pro with Android devices too, though it’s not quite as simple (in fact, many features won’t work as well with Android devices):
- Unlock your phone and go to the Bluetooth settings.
- Place the Powerbeats Pro charging case next to the phone, and open it.
- You should see the Powerbeats Pro show up in the list of available Bluetooth devices.
- Tap on the PowerBeasts Pro item to pair them to your phone.
- In the event that they do not appear as an available device, resetting them will likely fix it, Open the Powerbeats Pro charging case, and press the case’s button until the small white LED starts to blink. Wait a few moments, and refresh your available devices list.
The Powerbeats Pro pack an industry-leading nine hours of battery life, so it’s unlikely you’ll run out of juice over the course of even the longest workout, but if you’re feeling antsy and want to check on how they’re holding up, here are a few different ways to do that on an iPhone:
- For an at-a-glance indication, you’ll see a small battery gauge indicator next to the Bluetooth icon at the top of your iPhone’s screen. It’s not ultra-precise, but it’s enough to tell you if you’re flirting with the battery’s danger zone.
- For a better sense of what’s going on, enable the Batteries widget on your phone’s Today panel: With your phone unlocked, swipe down from the top of your screen, and either swipe left/right to get to the Today screen, or choose it from the two options at the top. Scroll to the bottom of the Today list and tap on the Edit button. Look for the Batteries listing and tap on the plus sign. It’s possible that Batteries has already been added, but isn’t visible because it’s hanging out at the bottom of the list. If that’s the case, (while still in Edit mode) simply drag it to the top using the three horizontal bars.
- For the most detailed view of the Powerbeats Pro battery life, place both earbuds back in the charging case, then open the case when it’s next to your phone. A dialog box will pop up, showing you the battery life for both earbuds and the charging case itself.
Unfortunately, if you’re an Android user, you won’t get a battery life indicator on the top of your phone’s menu, so you’ll have to rely on intuition.
Changing the name
By default, your Powerbeats Pros will simply be called “Powerbeats Pro.” How boring. To change the name, navigate to the Settings menu of your iPhone, then tap into the Bluetooth menu and select your Powerbeats Pros from the list of devices. Once selected, you can change the name of your earbuds by clicking the Name section and editing it to whatever you like.
Turning automatic ear detection on/off
If you’re an iOS user, you can take control of the Powerbeats Pro’s automatic ear-detection capability. To turn this function off, go to Settings, click the Bluetooth menu, tap the “i” next to the name of your Powerbeats Pros, and then you can enable/disable automatic ear detection using the toggle switch. It’s just below the device name option. Unfortunately, this does not work on Android.
Trigger Siri, without triggering those around you
We get it — sometimes it just feels really awkward to call out, “Hey Siri,” in public. At times like these, just press and hold on the Play/Pause button for 3 seconds and Siri will be at your beck and call, and no one else will know. Of course, you’ll still have to talk to her. Sorry.
Assigning the microphone to your left or right ear
The Powerbeats Pros are smart enough to know when you’ve only got one earbud in, and will automatically switch between microphones when you do this. But should you want to adjust how this works, look for the Microphone setting, right under the Automatic Ear Detection in the Bluetooth settings, for your Powerbeats Pros. Sorry, Android users, this is also an iOS-only feature.
Checking Powerbeats Pro battery life from your Apple Watch
Yep, you can do that. To check the Powerbeats Pro’s battery life from your Apple Watch, go to your watch’s Control Center and tap the Battery button. There you’ll find battery life indicators for both your watch and the connected Powerbeats Pros.
Even longer battery life?
If you ever need to stretch the battery life of the Powerbeats Pros to the limit, you can take advantage of the fact that removing one of the earbuds will power that side down. Keep it in the charging case, and switch back and forth between the two sides. Sure, you’ll only get tunes in one ear at a time, but that’s a small price to pay for doubling the life span of your earbuds.