iOS, macOS, and automatic switching

iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur introduce an automatic switching feature for the AirPods, AirPods Pro, and all their Beats headphones with the W1/ H1 chips (I have a Beats Pro X and a PowerBeats and I know it works with them). This is a cool feature in that the headphones automatically connect to whichever device you are active on, but doesn’t necessarily switch audio to that until you start playing something. Thus for instance I could be connected to my iPad Mini and listening to some music, but when I pick up the iPhone I get a notification that the headphones are now connected to it … but the audio coming from the iPad Mini continues to play via the headphones without any interruptions. Thus its like how Bose and other bluetooth headsets support being connected to two devices at the same time, but with a Apple twist added to it. :) 

There’s one issue though as I discovered today while browsing Amazon on my Mac with the headphones playing music from my iPhone. Amazon started playing an ad as it is won’t to do and this cut off my music. Irritating! 

There’s two things one can do here. Either turn off automatic connecting on the Mac for this pair of headphones (do that via the Bluetooth menu):

Or just turn off media playing for the website you are in. I was using Safari so this is what I did (I turned off Auto-Play):

Hope that helps anyone else!

Update: I ended up disabling automatic switching for this pair of headphones on the Mac. Turned out that whenever I’d pause audio on the iPhone and later press resume on the Mac, expecting the audio to be resumed, it launches the Music app on Mac instead! Aargh. :)