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Bluetooth headphone issues and how to solve them

Bluetooth headphones have been around for a while now, but its taken a few years for their audio quality and pricing to actually attract customers. Ever since Apple released their AirPods, consumer demand for wireless headphones has shot up. Despite of their technological advancements, Bluetooth headphones are still plagued by some annoying issues. We've had a look at the most common Bluetooth problems and found some solutions.  

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Jump to a problem:

My smartphone can't find my Bluetooth headphones

So you want to connect your headphones with your smartphone, but for some reason the headphones aren't showing up in your Bluetooth device list? Here's a list of potential problem solvers:

  • Check to see if you've actually turned on the Bluetooth connection on your phone. It's a surprisingly simple thing to miss.
  • Check if your headphones are compatible with your device and OS. If you’re using an iPhone it should run at least iOS 7, which natively supports “Bluetooth Smart Ready.” If you're on Android, make sure it’s running at least Android 4.3.
  • Make sure your smartphone and headphones are close enough to one another when you want to connect them. While the bulk of Bluetooth devices - especially headphones - have enough range, the best way to ensure they connect is when they are within at least 3 feet of each other. 
  • Check the manufacturer's recommended pairing process. Not all Bluetooth headphones will connect with your phone in the same way; sometimes it's as easy as just turning on your headphones, other times it's a bit more complicated. To avoid any issues with pairing your device, carefully read through all the details on what you should be doing. 
  • Try turning them off and on again. It's an old method, but let's face it - sometimes it really does work. 
  • Turn off or remove any interfering devices. It could be that for some reason your headphones are trying to connect with another device instead of your smartphone.
  • Move away from the WiFi router. It could be that your WiFi router is using the same spectrum as the headphones, and thus causing some interference.
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Bluetooth headphones will replace normal headphones in the next 5 years
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My Bluetooth headphones keep on disconnecting

There's nothing more frustrating that listening to some good tunes when suddenly your Bluetooth headphone connectivity just drops out. Sometimes the Bluetooth connection will cut out completely and force you to reconnect, other times it will drop off for a few seconds before it reconnects. Both are equally frustrating experiences, but come with equally easy solutions.

  • Keep within range of your headphones and smartphone. It's easy to wander around without being tied down to the audio jack of your smartphone, but it's even easier to move out of range.
  • Remove any unnecessary Bluetooth connections. It could very well be that case that your smartphone is “overwhelmed” by the amount of things trying to connect to it.
  • Make sure your Bluetooth headset has enough battery power. Bluetooth headphones have a tendency to periodically disconnect when they are low on battery.
  • Try unpairing your headphones and then re-pairing them with your smartphone.

The pairing between my headphones and smartphone keeps on failing

It also happens quite often that when you try to pair your headphones and smartphone together, you'll either be greeted by an error message or the pairing process seems to run forever - without actually pairing the two. The simplest solution here is:

  • Delete any unused or unnecessary Bluetooth connections. Some devices start acting up if there are too many devices in your Bluetooth connectivity list.  

If this fails, you can try any of the other solutions we've already listed.

Opinion by Georg Seebode
Bluetooth headphones only became popular when Apple released AirPods
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There's static whenever I listen to music on my Bluetooth headphones

Despite having come a long way, Bluetooth technology is still susceptible to interference such as static or crackling noises when you're listening to music.

  • First you should disable or turn off any other unused Bluetooth devices in the area.
  • If the static doesn't go away try resetting your headphones (you can easily figure this out by referring to the manufacturer's website).
  • Turn on your media player, then disconnect your headphones for 30 seconds and then re-pair them.
  • Reduce the distance between your smartphone and your headphones, as this also helps reduce (or even solve) any static.

These are all proven methods of getting around some of the more annoying Bluetooth issues, but this isn't a catch all list. If none of these troubleshooting methods work, it's best to contact the manufacturer directly.  

Have you tried any of these methods to resolve issues with your own Bluetooth devices? Are there any we've missed that you think will be useful? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • Karl E 4 months ago Link to comment

    I don´t like bluetooth headsets. since ever, they are having quality issues and do not working very well. Nowadays, they seem to be a little bit better and some of them are cheaper, but anyway, dont like them and this thinny thing called apple ear pods, come one, the most problems will occur by loosing them ... my opinion.

    • Georg Seebode
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      4 months ago Link to comment

      my biggest issue with bluetooth headphones had always been the battery life. Ive been using the jaybird bluebuds x and ive been super impressed with them. Battery life is great and sound are great.

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