AirPods Max case ‘not required for low-power mode’

Apple has moved to clarify the conditions under which its new AirPods Max will turn themselves off. The headphones haven’t got a physical power button, and there have some complaints about users having to use the (widely criticised) case to trigger low-power mode and preserve battery life.

In fact, Apple says in an updated support article, putting the AirPods Max in the Smart Case immediately triggers low-power mode but it isn’t the only way to do this. And there’s a deeper, ultra-low-power mode that offers still greater battery preservation.

When the headphones are taken off and put to one side – but not in the case – they will enter low-power mode after five stationary minutes. After another 72 hours like this, the headphones will go into an even deeper hibernation, which turns off Bluetooth and Apple tracking via the Find My app.

The same process applies when the AirPods Max are in the Smart Case, but each stage triggers more quickly. As soon as they are placed in the case (instead of after five minutes) the low-power mode will be activated. And it will then take 18 hours (rather than 72) for them to enter the deeper, lower-power mode. As with the no-case scenario, the AirPods must be stationary to enter the deepest power-save mode.

Apple likes to keep physical controls to a minimum on its hardware products, and this sometimes causes confusion among users. In a separate article, for example, we explain how to reset the AirPods Max to factory settings.

If Apple’s clarification has eased your mind and you now feel ready to make the purchase, you may like to read our guide offering advice on where to buy the AirPods Max. If you’re more inclined to wait a little longer, take a look at our new AirPods rumour hub for information about next year’s launches.

This article originally appeared on Macworld Sweden. Translation by David Price.

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