Apple ID guidelines

Proper management of Apple IDs is critical to the Apple experience. Each person should use their own Apple ID for iCloud, Messages & FaceTime. At the same time, people in the same household or small group can share an Apple ID for music & apps. Learn how to enter your Apple ID in your apps.

Be sure each person has their own Apple ID for iCloud, Messages & FaceTime. If you set up iCloud for several people using the same Apple ID, they’ll have exactly the same contacts & calendars, notes & reminders, photos & documents. And if you share an Apple ID for Messages & FaceTime you’ll get each other’s messages and video calls as well.

Link all your email addresses to your Apple ID. If your primary email address isn't the same as your Apple ID – or if you have more than one email address – how will people find you to send you a text message, make a FaceTime call, share iCloud calendars or photo streams? That’s why it’s critical to add all your important email accounts to your Apple ID. You can do this in the Messages or FaceTime preferences, or sign into Apple ID on the web (see below).

We recommend using Family Sharing for apps, music & videos for your household or small workgroup. You can share the items you purchase with that account and you'll only be charged once. 

If a user purchases an app or media with their own Apple ID, it belongs to them or the Family Sharing group. You cannot update apps or transfer apps or media files to another account. You'll need to purchase apps and media again, even if a new person uses the same equipment.

Purchases are tagged with an Apple ID. Every song, book, video and app is tagged with the Apple ID used for its purchase. You'll need that Apple ID and its password to transfer purchases to a new device or update an app. If you have multiple Apple IDs, you'll have a lot more to track. And unfortunately, there’s no way to consolidate Apple IDs. Once you’ve used an Apple ID, there's no going back.

Although you can’t consolidate or close an account, you can simplify your life by using just one of your Apple IDs for future purchases. If you have iTunes Match, use that Apple ID from now on. Otherwise, use the Apple ID where you’ve made the most purchases. Learn how to check your purchase history.

If you’re having difficulty keeping your Apple IDs straight, or getting the right apps, music, contacts and calendars in the right places, contact us. We’re here to help.

Where can you use your Apple ID?

Use your Apple ID to buy music and videos in iTunes, ringtones, books & magazines on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, apps for your Mac, and access your music in the cloud with iCloud Music Library & iTunes Match. An Apple ID is the basis for iCloud, which keeps the contacts, calendars, photos, passwords and documents in sync among the Apple devices you use. Apple ID is used for Game Center, FaceTime and iMessage. You’ll need it to Find My Friends, My iPhone, My iPad or My Mac. Apple ID allows Home Sharing to pair your devices to an Apple TV or transfer music from one computer to another. Access Photos and sync with iCloud Photo Library. Take a class with iTunes U. You can log into a Mac with your Apple ID. Use your Apple ID to make reservations for the Genius Bar at the Apple Retail Store. Even purchase Apple hardware at and track your AppleCare warranty or Apple support online. Put simply, anything that has to do with Apple – on any of your devices – should be done with your single Apple ID.

Read more about Apple IDs.

   ©2023 Creative Tech Support, Inc.   Experts in Apple support since 1994     Need help? Contact us.     Not officially affiliated, related, or licensed by Apple.