I've updated my iPhone to the latest OS.
I've cleaned the case with rubbing alcohol inside and out. Also cleaned the airpods themselves.
Charged the case and the airpods all the way to 100%.
Taken the airpods out put them back in several times.
The case lid is open. Still the back button does nothing.
Flipping the case open, it shows a green light.
My device was initially connected to my iPhone and worked ok. This morning, I decided to pair with my PC as well (Windows 10). Flipping open the lid and using the button did nothing.
Per the web recommendations, removed the airpods from my phone's list of paired bluetooth devices.
After that, flipping the lid open and holding down the back button did work ok. I was able to pair them to my Windows 10 PC. However, once paired, the back button again did nothing.
I then Removed the airpods from the list of paired devices on my PC. flipping open the airpods lid and holding the back button on the case still does nothing.
I'm hypothesizing that the airpods have an internal list of paired devices. Once this list has one device in it, there seems to be a bug and the back button loses functionality. Removing the airpods from an apple device seems to allow for communication to the airpods that the device has been removed. This is possibly why it's recommended to remove your iPhone if having issues pairing.
However, removing from a Windows PC doesn't seem to clear it from the airpods' list. So, now, they're rendered effectively useless.
Has anyone had this issue? Found a workaround?