© Fadhli Adnan/Shutterstock.com

Apple’s AirPods remain some of the best-selling earbuds on the market. Since launching in 2016, it’s estimated that AirPods — base models, Pro models, and the Max model — have made over $20 billion in revenue for Apple each year. That shakes out to around 58 million AirPods sold in 2021 alone. And yet, despite all the positives of the AirPods, one problem across the board: charge times. Just how long do AirPods take to charge? Well, it depends on the model and the generation you own.

From all three generations of the AirPods to both generations of the AirPods Pro to the one and only AirPods Max, charge times vary across the AirPods line of products. The same goes for charge types, which range from Lightning to MagSafe to wireless. We’ve created this handy guide for your convenience, listing every AirPods model and generation along with charge times for the earbuds and the charging case itself. Here’s where you’ll find the answer to the question of how long AirPods take to charge.

How Long AirPods Take to Charge by Model

Over six different generations of AirPods have been released across three unique models since their initial release in 2016..

AirPods

First released on December 13th of 2016, the 1st generation AirPods were the model that started it all for Apple. While they were later discontinued in 2019 in favor of more recent model generations, many people still have 1st generation AirPods in their possession. Initially priced at $159, this 1st generation of AirPods saw a significant price drop with the release of the 2nd generation model in 2019.

For 1st generation AirPods, you can get three hours of listening time with a short 15-minute quick charge. For a full charge, you’ll need to leave the AirPods in the case for about 30 minutes. With this, you’ll get about five hours of listening time.. Your AirPods case will give you 24 hours’ worth of charges, and it takes about an hour to charge the case to full from dead.

AirPods (2nd Generation)

The 2nd generation AirPods arrived a few years later, releasing on March 20th of, 2019. This updated model of the ever-popular AirPods made several key improvements, including faster connection times from device to device and the ability to opt for a wireless charging case. Priced at $159 for the standard charging case and $199 for the wireless charging case, the 2nd generation AirPods dropped in price to $129 and got rid of the wireless charging case with the release of the 3rd generation model in 2021.

2nd generation AirPods give you three hours of listening time with a 15-minute quick charge. For a full charge, you have to leave them in the case for just 30 minutes. The standard and wireless case delivers five hours of listening per charge and up to 24 hours of charging per case. Like the 1st generation model, it takes about an hour to recharge the standard case from dead.

AirPods (3rd Generation)

The newest AirPods model, the 3rd generation, was released on October 26th of, 2021. Their release marks several major improvements over the 2nd generation, including a total aesthetic redesign that shortened the stems and widened the case (not unlike the look of the AirPods Pro). Moreover, the 3rd generation AirPods made major changes to the wireless earbuds’ battery and charging. They now support Lightning charging, MagSafe charging, and wireless charging. They’re currently priced at $179 for MagSafe and wireless charging and $169 for Lightning charging.

Across the board, the 3rd generation AirPods deliver an hour of listening with a five-minute quick charge. Additionally, they take just under an hour to reach a full charge. The 3rd generation AirPods give you six hours of listening when fully charged and deliver 30 hours of charges per case. It only takes about an hour to recharge the case from dead fully.

AirPods Pro

Apple AirPods Pro
Apple AirPods Pro sold at $249 at launch but dropped to $159 with the launch of the 2nd generation in 2022.

After a few years of major success surrounding the 1st generation AirPods, Apple introduced the AirPods Pro alongside the 2nd generation AirPods on October 30th, 2019. They brought with them all sorts of new features (not to mention a new look). These features included noise cancellation, water resistance, transparency mode, interchangeable earbud tips, and wireless charging. These new features gave the Pros a worse battery life than the 2nd generation AirPods.

The AirPods Pro delivers an hour of listening with a five-minute quick charge. For a full charge, you’ll need to leave them in the case for under half an hour. When fully charged, you can enjoy up to four and a half hours of listening time (or less when used for phone calls). Each charge case provides up to 24 hours of charging, and each charge case takes an hour to charge itself fully.

AirPods Pro (2nd Generation)

September 23rd of, 2022 saw a series of much-needed improvements for the AirPods Pro in the form of a 2nd generation model. Boasting a new H2 chip and improved battery and Bluetooth connectivity, the AirPods Pro 2nd generation also came with better sound quality and improved noise cancellation capabilities. They’re priced at $249, which will surely drop in a few years with the release of the to-be-announced 3rd generation model.

The 2nd generation AirPods Pro will give you an hour of listening from a five-minute quick charge. For a full charge, leave them in the case for about 30 minutes or less. Once fully charged, you can expect about six hours of listening time — a good 90 minutes more than the 1st generation Pro model. Additionally, each charging case delivers 30 hours of charging. The case takes about an hour to charge itself fully, and can be charged using Lightning, MagSafe, or wireless charging.

AirPods Max

You might think that the whole point of AirPods is to get away from the need for headphones, but then again, the AirPods Max exist. Resembling the kind of over-the-ear headphones Beats are known for (weird, because Apple owns Beats), the AirPods Max is the highest-end model in the entire AirPods line of products. They’ll cost you $549 — enough to buy the latest 2nd generation AirPods Pro for you and a friend and still have some money left over. Still, the price is worth it for the battery life alone.

 Quick charging the AirPods Max for just five minutes will deliver a whole hour and a half of listening time. For a full charge, you’ll need to keep the AirPods Max on the charger for 90 minutes. That’s much longer than any other AirPods model or generation, but you’ll get 20 hours of listening time for your trouble.

Chart: How Long Do AirPods Take to Charge?

AirPods2nd Gen AirPods3rd Gen AirPodsAirPods Pro2nd Gen AirPodsAirPods Max
Quick Charge Time15 minutes15 minutes5 minutes5 minutes5 minutes5 minutes
Full Charge Time30 minutes30 minutes60 minutes30 minutes30 minutes90 minutes
Listening Time per Charge5 hours5 hours6 hours4.5 hours6 hours20 hours
Charges per Case24 hours24 hours30 hours24 hours30 hoursN/A
Case Charge Time (From 0%)60 minutes60 minutes (Lightning); 90 minutes (wireless)60 minutes (Lightning, MagSafe);
90 minutes (wireless)
60 minutes (Lightning, MagSafe);
90 minutes (wireless)
60 minutes (Lightning, MagSafe);
90 minutes (wireless)
N/A
Charging TypesLightningLightning, wirelessLightning, MagSafe, wirelessLightning, MagSafe, wirelessLightning, MagSafe, wirelessLightning

How Long Do AirPods Take to Charge? FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

How many different kinds of AirPods are there?

There are currently three AirPods models to choose from: the base model AirPods, the AirPods Pro, and the AirPods Max.

What are the cheapest AirPods?

The 2nd generation AirPods are currently the cheapest AirPods model at just $129.

Which AirPods have the best battery life?

The 2nd generation AirPods Pro are the AirPods model with the best battery life (apart from the AirPods Max).

When will the 2nd generation AirPods Max come out?

As of this writing, there are currently no public plans for a 2nd generation AirPods Max.

Is wireless charging faster than wired charging?

Wireless charging tends to take a little longer than wired charging simply because of the limits of wireless charging technology.

About the Author

Follow Me On:

LinkedIn Logo

More from History-Computer

  • Apple Available here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT207012
  • Apple Available here: https://www.apple.com/airpods-2nd-generation/specs/
  • Apple Available here: https://www.apple.com/airpods-3rd-generation/specs/
  • Apple Available here: https://www.apple.com/airpods-pro/specs/
  • Apple Available here: https://www.apple.com/airpods-max/specs/