While iPhones have different camera designs and sizes that make it easy to distinguish between the different models, the same isn’t the case with the AirPods.
The different models are essentially wireless earbuds that come in a sleek, white case, which is why it’s tough to identify which AirPods you own only by looking at them. In fact, it’s even more challenging to differentiate between gen 1 and gen 2 AirPods.
But if you’re wondering what gen AirPods you have, the good news is there are many ways to figure that out. In this article, we talk about how you can find which gen AirPods you have.
How To Identify Which Generation AirPods You Have
Let’s have a look at the different ways you can determine which gen AirPods you own.
Method #1: Using the Model Number
You can know your AirPods’ model number in two ways. Once you know the model number, compare it with the following model numbers to know which gen you have:
- AirPods Pro: A2083, A2084
- 3rd generation AirPods: A2564, A2565
- 2nd generation AirPods: A2031, A2032
- 1st generation AirPods: A1523, A1722
You can skip this step if you have over-ear AirPods since the only over-ear Apple AirPods present on the market at present are AirPods Max.
Some models have two serial numbers because the right and left AirPods have their own numbers.
As mentioned earlier, there are two ways to know the model number.
Once you pair up your iPhone and AirPods, here’s what you need to do next:
- Go to Settings, then Bluetooth.
- Find your AirPods from the available devices you see in the list.
- Click on the More info icon in front of your AirPods’ name.
- You will see the model name, serial number, version, and model number. Compare this with the numbers listed above to know which gen you have.
While the model name can also help, the most accurate way of knowing which gen you have is with the model number.
From your AirPods
If you can’t connect your iPhone and AirPods, but you want to know which gen you have, then you can see the bottom of your AirPods. Each AirPod has an individual model number printed on the bottom.
Once you have the model number, simply match it with the list of model numbers above, and you’ll know which gen you have.
Method #2: Using the Serial Number
Another way to find which gen you have is by using the AirPods serial number. Head over to Apple’s coverage page and enter the serial number. The results that show up will mention your device’s model, warranty status, and generation.
Method #3: Using the Charging Case
You can also know which gen of AirPods you have with the charging case and its design details, serial number, and model number.
Just like with the AirPods themselves, you can find the model and serial numbers of the charging case by going to Settings.
Then, you can match the numbers with the following last:
- AirPods Pro MagSafe case: A2190, and serial number ending with 1059
- AirPods Pro case: A2190, and serial number ending with 0C6L
- 3rd gen AirPods MagSafe charging case: A2566
- 1st and 2nd gen AirPods lighting charging case: A1602
- 1st and 2nd gen AirPods wireless charging case: A1938
You can also distinguish between the charging case of different AirPods generations by their design details. Both first and second-gen AirPods have a charging case that is more like a vertical rectangle.
The charging cases for gen 1 and gen 2 AirPods are interchangeable, so you can definitely charge gen 1 AirPods by using the charging case of gen 2 AirPods. However, there are still big differences between the two. First-gen AirPods come with a non-wireless charging case, while the charging case for second-gen AirPods comes with wireless charging.
Another design difference between the two is the placement of the lightning connector. For gen 1 AirPods, the lightning connector is placed on the lid’s bottom edge. Meanwhile, if you have a gen 2 AirPods charging case, you will find the lightning connector at the bottom of the case. Plus, it allows plug-in charging.
In addition, you can see the status light for gen 1 AirPods from inside the wired charging case, while for the 2nd gen wireless case, you can see it from the front.
Apart from these two charging cases, you have charging cases for the AirPods Pro and 3rd generation AirPods. Both are horizontal, rectangular cases.
The best way to know which gen AirPods you have is to look at its charging case, design, and model number. You can easily match the model number on your AirPods or the charging case with the model numbers we’ve listed above, or you can head over to Apple’s website and find your model there.
Once you know which gen AirPods you have, you can purchase the right accessories or get the answers to questions specific to the generation of AirPods you have.
Frequently Asked Questions
Like with all other accessories, it’s no surprise that there are knock-off AirPods present in the market. And while they may look exactly the same, they hardly have the same functionality or even the same audio quality. But you can quickly know whether you have fake or real AirPods. Simply head over to Apple’s coverage page and enter your AirPods serial number. If nothing shows up, then it means that your AirPods are fake.
Both generations don’t have the same case, but you can still use the charging case interchangeably to charge your AirPods. So you can charge gen 1 AirPods in a gen 2 case.