WARNING – Flight Mode does not disable Apple AirPods

Apple AirPods can only be turned off by putting them back in their carry case.

In this recent review of the Apple AirPods I discovered that when you put your iPhone into flight mode the Apple Airpods continue to transmit high levels of EMF. So next time you board a flight or enter an area in a hospital that requires you to turn your phone off, be sure to put your AirPods back in their case, not in your pocket.

This is demonstrated in the following video:

The Apple AirPods are different to other bluetooth audio devices because they emit higher levels of EMF and they do it continuously. They emit 10 times more more EMF (3500 mV/m) than my iPhone 6 when it’s on a simple cellular call (300 mV/m), so not turning them off is worse than not turning your phone off!
There are two issues here. Firstly  levels of EMF from Apple AirPods are higher than other similar devices.
  • They emit 3x the bluetooth EMF of my Marley get together. (It emits approx 1000mV/m)
  • They emit 3x the bluetooth EMF of my Macbook Pro.  (It emits approx 1000mV/m)
  • They emit 10x the bluetooth of my iPhone 6 on a cellular only call (It emits approx 300mV/m at your ear with wifi and bluetooth off).

And that’s at the source. By the time the EMF from my laptop gets to my head it’s reduced by the distance down to about 100mV/v. So streaming music to my Marley Get Together over bluetooth while I am using my laptop is 1/30th the EMF at my head compared to listening through the AirPods.

The second issue is that the Apple AirPods do not turn off unless you put them in their case. They continue to transmit even when the phone is turned off or out of range or in flight mode. My Marley Get Together turns off its bluetooth when the connection is dropped.


The only way to turn off bluetooth on Apple AirPods is to return them to their case. Don’t leave them in your ears or your pocket when you are not using them.



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