For the past several years, Apple has offered Live Listen as a way for hearing-impaired users to turn their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch into a remote microphone that connects to a hearing aid.
Now, with iOS12 released in September, Apple has added that same Live Listen support for AirPods, its wireless earbuds. For parents on the go, that means with a few taps, you can turn your phone or tablet into an impromptu baby monitor that connects directly to an earbud.
Tim Hardwick at MacRumors explains how:
You could use your iPhone or iPad as a makeshift baby monitor for when the baby’s napping and you’re in another room with the TV on. All you’d need to do is put the iOS device near the baby’s crib and wear a single AirPod, which should have a strong enough Bluetooth range to allow you to listen in from afar.
Live Listen will work even when other audio is being played on your iPhone or iPad—so you could listen to a podcast, say, and still be keeping tabs on the baby. Just note that whatever it is that you’re listening to will switch to mono output to match the Live Listen stream, and the AirPods’ tap gestures will be disabled for as long as the feature is active.
Would you want to use this as your regular, everyday monitor? Doubtful. You won’t want a baby babbling—or screaming—directly into your ear on a regular basis. But if you’re away from home for the weekend sans monitor or you’re at a friend’s house for football on Sunday and the baby needs a nap? It could come in handy.
Read Tim’s full piece for step-by-step instructions on how to set Live Listen on your iPhone or iPad.