It's hard to deny that Apple has a pretty nice ecosystem for their devices. If you have an iPhone, an iPad, or a Mac, then you've most likely been tempted by what Apple has to offer in the headphone department. Although Apple has released a few headphones, some under the Beats brand, they don’t give a very wide selection to choose from. This means that not all the recommendations on this list will benefit from the W1/H1 chip that gives earbuds like the Apple AirPods a slight performance boost and better ease of use on iOS devices. However, all these recommendations will work with your iPhone and iPad wirelessly, some with app support on iOS for better customization features.
We've tested more than 81 wireless in-ears and earbuds and below are our top recommendations for the best headphones for iPhone users to purchase in 2019. See also our recommendations for the best sounding wireless earbuds, the best earbuds with a mic, and the best truly wireless earbuds.
The best wireless earbuds for iPhone that we’ve tested so far are the Beats Powerbeats Pro. They take advantage of Apple’s H1 chip for seamless integration with iOS devices and are very easy-to-use thanks to their intuitive physical controls. They’re well-built and have a comfortable yet stable fit which makes them great for working out.
These sports-oriented wireless in-ears have a remarkably balanced sound with great audio reproduction, so they’re well-suited to a very wide range of music genres. They also have impressive battery performance. They provide over 11 hours of continuous playback on a single charge, have a standby mode, and come with a charging case that can help their battery last even longer. They don’t isolate very much noise, but this can be helpful if you want to remain aware of your surroundings while training.
Unfortunately, they don’t come with any customizable features on the iPhone, unlike the Apple AirPods 2 2019 which feature mappable controls. All things considered, though, they're the best wireless headphones for iPhone users: they're great wireless in-ears for sports and are versatile enough to be a decent choice for most uses. You can also consider the Beats Powerbeats3 if you don’t need a truly wireless design, but they don’t come with a charging case.
If you own an iPhone that doesn’t have a headphone jack, you’ve probably considered the Apple AirPods at some point. They’re not as versatile as the Beats Powerbeats Pro, but they’re super lightweight and have a unique earbud fit that is impressively comfortable. They only take a half hour to fully charge, and their charging case provides up to 5 extra charges, so as long as you have the case nearby you don’t have to wait too long before you can start using them again if the battery dies.
On the downside, their open-back design lets in a lot of ambient noise and results in a lack of deep bass. Fans of more bass-heavy genres may be disappointed since you can’t readily EQ their sound, but they’ll be fine for podcasts and audiobooks. In addition, their open fit is good for joggers and commuters who want to monitor their surroundings. If you prefer in-ears that isolate more noise and have stronger bass, consider the Beats BeatsX, which have a deeper in-ear fit but aren’t truly wireless.
If you like a truly wireless design but prefer customizable headphones that you can set up with Android or iOS, then get the Jabra Elite Active 65t. They’re not as comfortable as the Beats Powerbeats Pro, but their in-ear fit blocks a lot more noise, which makes them good travel headphones. They’re well-built headphones with a smooth matte finish and are rated IP56 for dust and water resistance.
They have very good audio reproduction out-of-the-box and you can pair them with the Jabra Sound+ app on your smartphone to further customize the way they sound. Since they isolate so much noise, they even have a talk-through feature so you can hear what’s going on around you without needing to take the earbuds out of your ears, which is great for commuters.
These headphones have a 5-hour battery life, which is a bit higher than average for truly wireless headphones, but they don’t last nearly as long as the Beats. They also don’t benefit from the H1 chip like the Beats headphones do. On the upside, they are a better option for those who use both Android and iOS, thanks to the wealth of customization options offered by their mobile app.
If you’re looking for highly customizable sports-oriented earbuds for iPhone, get the Jaybird Tarah Pro. They’re not truly wireless like the Jabra Elite Active 65t, but they’re even more customizable. They’re well-built with a braided cable connecting two magnetic earbuds that can snap together for easier cable management. They have a comfortable earbud-like fit that protrudes in the ear canal less deeply than typical in-ears. They're rated IPX7 for advanced water resistance.
While these earbuds sound decent out-of-the-box, what really sets them apart is their compatibility with the Jaybird MySound app that provides a great parametric EQ for you to customize them your way. The app is available on iOS and Android, so you won’t have a problem if you switch between operating systems. They have a 13-hour battery life and trigger an auto-off timer when the magnetic earbuds are snapped together, further saving power.
On the downside, they use a proprietary charging cradle. This can be frustrating, especially since most people aren’t likely to be carrying a spare charger on them for you to borrow if ever you misplace or forget yours. However, if the charger isn’t a bother for you, these are great sports headphones that work well with the iPhone, even though they don’t feature the H1 chip.
If you want comfortable wireless in-ears with a battery that’ll last all day at a budget price, the best earphones for iPhone users in the budget category are the Anker SoundBuds Curve. They have a sporty look and a stable ear-hook design that comes with 6 tip options to ensure a perfect fit. The tips don’t enter as far into the ear canal as other in-ear headphones do, which relieves a bit of the pressure some people feel with in-ears.
These in-ears sound better than the Apple AirPods 2 2019 for a fraction of the cost. They pack a lot of bass, but are pretty well-balanced overall for budget in-ears. They also have better noise isolation performance than the Beats Powerbeats Pro, though not as good as the Jabra Elite Active 65t. They also have a fairly decent battery, lasting nearly 13 hours on a single charge, which is even better than that of the Beats Powerbeats3.
Like the Jabra Elite Active 65t and the Jaybird Tarah Pro, these headphones don’t have Apple’s H1 chip, so they have to be paired like a regular Bluetooth device and don’t benefit from the same latency and range benefits that the Powerbeats and the Apple do. They also don’t have a power-saving feature, so they need to be shut off when not in use or else the battery will continue to drain. That said, they're the best headphones for iPhone users at this price point.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best earbuds for iPhone for most people to buy. We factor in the price (cheaper headphones win over pricier ones if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no headphones that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our reviews for wireless earbuds and in-ear headphones. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones. Personal taste, preference and listening habits will matter more in your selection.