I find myself fighting for control of my own Bluetooth speakers far too often.
I’ll invite a friend over and they’ll ask to connect to the speaker to play a video for me. Two hours later, we’ve watched five semi-funny youtube skits and listened to half of my friend’s newest music obsessions.
It never bothers me too much, but eventually, it’s my turn to play some tunes.
I don’t want to seem rude and call them out for their speaker pirating behavior.
Sometimes, they won’t give back control of the speaker anyway.
So, over my time as host, I’ve developed a few tactics to boot friends and family off of my Bluetooth speakers to maintain control of my home.
There aren’t many, but one of them is sure to do the trick when you need it.
How Do I Kick Someone Off My Bluetooth Speaker?
There’s only one sure-fire method to take back control of your Bluetooth Speaker when someone else pairs to it. You’ll need to reset the device and connect to it first. Unfortunately, Bluetooth connections are memorized by both the speaker and the devices they connect to, so there’s a chance it connects to their phone again automatically.
Instead, you’ll need to use the device’s specific reset commands to ensure the connection is lost.
Otherwise, you’ll have to wait until the other person’s device is out of Bluetooth range to connect again.
Force the Speaker into Pairing Mode
Most Bluetooth speakers can be forced into pairing mode.
All you have to do is find the Bluetooth button on the speaker.
Then press and hold it for about five seconds.
The LED light should begin to slowly flash, signalling it is ready to pair.
Connect to the speaker from your phone before you lose it to whoever jacked it in the first place.
If your device doesn’t have a Bluetooth button, look through the user manual to see if it has a method to initiate pairing mode.
All Bluetooth speakers have a method to do this as it is required to perform the initial setup.
Reset the Speaker
The commands to reset your Bluetooth speaker are going to be determined by whatever the manufacturer decided.
In general, the steps to reset your speaker will look something like this:
- Power the Bluetooth speaker down.
- Ensure all devices are disconnected from the speaker. (If you’ve got a Bluetooth pirate that will prove difficult. Skip disconnecting them if you need to.)
- Press and hold the Bluetooth button and Power button for up to fifteen seconds. (In some cases the device will not have a Bluetooth button, instead hold the Volume Up and Power buttons for fifteen seconds.)
The device should power cycle and turn on in pairing mode.
Quickly pair with the speaker before the signal pirate does.
Don’t unpair from the device unless you power it down.
Use an Aux Cable
If you’re just not quick enough to demand control of your speaker’s Bluetooth signal, there is one option that never fails.
You will need to have a comfortable length of 3.5mm male-to-male auxiliary cable to pull it off.
Bluetooth speakers with auxiliary connections will always prioritize control of the speaker to wired connections.
If you’re lucky enough to have a device that still has an audio jack or you have the adapters you need to use auxiliary connections, just plug one end of the cable into the speaker and the other into the smartphone, tablet, or computer you want to control it with.
The wireless connections will be ignored and you will once again dominate control of the audio. Enjoy the power and control while you have it.
Prevent Unauthorized Connections to Your Bluetooth Speaker
The best method of kicking pirates off your Bluetooth devices is to prevent them from having access in the first place.
It’s not always possible, especially when you like to share.
If you happen to have come to this list from a situation where your speaker was jacked in public, this advice is more directed at you.
There are ways to keep your devices private and in your control.
Below, I’m going to outline a few practices you can start putting to use right away.
Keep Your Speaker Powered Off When Not in Use
If you’re not using your Bluetooth speakers and devices, turn them off.
The best preventative measure against unauthorized access is to not broadcast a Bluetooth signal everywhere you go.
If it’s not in use, keeping it powered off will stop it from trying to connect to anything and save battery power.
Even if battery power in Bluetooth speakers nowadays goes for 24 hours, it doesn’t hurt to need one less charging cycle.
Some Bluetooth speakers can pair to multiple devices at a time.
Even if you are currently paired to the device, it’s a possibility that it will not prevent someone else from connecting to it as well.
Save yourself the hassle and concern.
Just turn it off when you’re not using it.
Always Stay Paired to Your Speaker
If you’re positive your speaker can only manage one connection at a time, then you can just make sure to never unpair from the device.
Remember that Bluetooth modules use quite a bit of power in your devices.
Keeping a speaker connected at all times will lead both the speaker and the device it’s paired with to drain battery power at a faster rate.
You may or may not be comfortable with this as an option to protect against unauthorized connections to your speaker.
I would only recommend sticking with this option if:
- Your smartphone or device has excellent battery life and power management.
- You don’t mind carrying an external microphone on your person.
- Your device has a smart device control feature like Samsung’s Smart Control
- You have a portable battery pack.
The ultimate option for security is to buy a Bluetooth speaker with a coded locking system.
These devices are not as easily found or popular, but they can be set to connect only to devices that enter a specific connection key, which is usually four or five number combinations.
These speakers come with a heftier price tag than most Bluetooth speakers on the market.
The good news is they will also be high-quality audio devices.
If you’re serious about security and sound quality, it may be a good idea to begin your search for secure Bluetooth speakers.\
Is there an app I can use to kick people off my Bluetooth speakers?
Unfortunately, no app can allow you to boot unwanted devices from connecting to your Bluetooth speakers.
You’ll have to use the workaround described above to achieve your goal.
At least that is the case for now.
The future may yet see Bluetooth speakers with more advanced controls through mobile applications.
How can I jam or hijack a Bluetooth speaker?
Without a thorough knowledge of wireless connections and packets, you can’t.
Due to the moral problems with this use for kicking people off Bluetooth speakers, I won’t even begin to detail how it may be possible.
Just go buy your speaker or ask to use your friend’s speaker politely.
Can someone else connect to my Bluetooth speaker and take control?
A stranger can gain control of your Bluetooth speaker.
It is important to note that they would have to be within range of the Bluetooth signal.
Some speakers can connect to multiple devices already and may prioritize the newest connections.
For speakers that can only manage one connection, a smart programmer could devise a way to connect to your speaker and disconnect your device.
There is little to gain from doing this besides being mischievous.
I would not think it is too serious a concern.
There’s plenty of ways to connect to Bluetooth devices with ease, but there aren’t many to kick people off when they do.
If you find yourself needing to regain control of your Bluetooth speakers, just remember to try one of these three things:
- Turn the speaker off and on again, then race to pair faster than your friend.
- Reset the speaker to factory settings and connect it only to your device when it restarts.
- Plug your device directly into the speaker with an auxiliary cable.
Using an auxiliary cable is the fastest and most consistent way to get back control of your speakers.
If you don’t have an extra cable lying around, an auxiliary cable is a useful accessory to pick up.
Make sure to add it to your must-get list for the next time you go shopping for tech gadgets.