New AirPods Max firmware update might fix mystery battery drain

By

iFixit AirPods Max teardown finds much to like
An AirPods Max firmware update is now available. Here’s hoping it fixes a bad bug.
Photo: iFixit

Apple’s over-the-ears headphones got a firmware update on Tuesday. It’s not clear what’s in the new software for AirPods Max because Apple never discloses that detail, but many users are hoping it’s a fix for an irritating power drain.

The problem has been reported and discussed on the Apple support forums. As one user said, “My AirPods Max are deeply self discharging overnight. They go from 90+% down to 0 overnight.”

We don’t know if this is fixed by Tuesday’s update because there are never release notes for any new AirPods firmware versions.

Get AirPods Max firmware 3C39

AirPods Max owners can now update their devices to firmware version 3C39. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as pushing a button on your iPhone.

Apple gives no instructions on how to update the software in these headphones. The best we can do is be guided by what it takes to update in-ear AirPods. Even though that’s an indirect process.

Based on what it takes to get Apple’s in-ear models to install an update, don’t use the AirPods Max. Instead, plug in the accessory so it’s charging. And keep the iPhone it’s paired with nearby. It’s not clear whether putting them in the Smart Case will make a difference, but it probably won’t hurt. Then wait.

Find out if new AirPods Max firmware is installed

You can find out if/when this new AirPods Max firmware has been installed only by digging around in the Settings app.

Go to Settings > Bluetooth and look under My Devices for your AirPods Max. Tap on the blue circle i next to it, then scroll down to Version.  If it’s 3C39, the process is complete.