Advice Sought: Considering Moving to Family Share: Things to beware of?

Discussion in 'Apple Music, Apple Pay, iCloud, Apple Services' started by eoblaed, Sep 30, 2015.

  1. eoblaed macrumors 68020


    Apr 21, 2010
    I'd like to subscribe to Apple Music. To do that, though we have to have Family Share turned on.

    I've been reluctant to do so as I'm afraid it'll actually introduce more complexity and headache than our current setup. Currently, we:
    • Share the same Apple ID (mine)
    • All purchases are done through that ID
    • Kids and wife will occasionally purchase music that are specific to their tastes. All music goes into the large RAID array I have in house.
    • I and my kids sync against my iMac. My wife syncs against her iMac.
    • My kids rarely sync against my iMac. They rely mostly on being able to download anything we've purchased directly from iTunes.
    • All our iOS devices are configured to use our personal iCloud accounts for iCloud stuff, and all iOS devices are configured to use my Apple ID for media/store access/downloads.
    This works fine for us now. There are concerns about the future though, when our kids move out and start managing their own media about whether or not they'd be able to take 'their' music with them, but that's a bit beyond the scope of this question.

    One of the things I want to avoid is having to search multiple family members' purchases to find a track/artist to download ... ie. if someone in the family purchases a soundtrack using their Apple ID (as part of Family Share), and I want to have access to that too, do I have to know which person purchased it? Is it easy to just snag the media I want regardless of who initiated the purchase?

    Another thought: with family share, is it possible to apply iTunes gift cards to individual family members? Such that, if they make an iTunes purchase, it'll deduct from their gift card before hitting the default payment method for the Family?

    Is it possible to turn off the purchase approval step? I see, for example, if a kid makes a purchase the administrator of the Family Share has to approve that purchase. Can that be turned off?

    tl;dr: If anyone can provide some insight on the daily issues/benefits of Family share, I'd really appreciate it!
  2. steeler macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2008
    Since nobody has replied yet, I'll give you my experience.

    In June, I had the same setup with my family as you do now. I haven't bought any music from iTunes, ever (ok, maybe a few free tracks, but nothing significant).

    In the App Store, if you want an app purchased by your spouse, you'll have to look under your spouse's purchased items. There is a search feature, so it's not a complete pain. The same is true for Videos/Movies (purchased and have a few included via digital copies in Disney Blu Ray movies). I assume the same would be true in the iTunes Music Store.

    Read this about purchases/gift cards:

    You can turn off the ask feature for purchases. It is for in-app purchases as well as music, movies, and apps. If your kids won't rack up hundreds of dollars in in-app purchases, then you'll be fine with it off. My kids are too young for me to allow that.

    I did have a game that was bought under my account, and when I tried to do an in-app purchase under my kid's account, it said he hadn't bought the app, so the purchase couldn't be completed. I am sure I could just buy the app under his account, but I didn't want to do that. I didn't try any other methods to get it to work.

    I'll be keeping family sharing enabled for Apple Music (that's why I did it in the first place). I like "owning" music, and am not sure about the subscription model. However, for now, with two kids approaching the teenage years, I'm thinking the best way to expose them to multiple genres and artists is via subscription streaming service like Apple Music. Spotify would fit the bill as well, but looks to be more expensive than the $15 I'll be paying Apple for four people (2 adults, 2 kids).
  3. Peepo macrumors 6502a

    Jun 18, 2009
    My wife and I shared apple id for iTunes but I recently moved over to family sharing with my two kids because of Apple Music. I just added the original account to family share so we have access to old apps etc. The only things that do not work across family sharing are in app purchases so I just bought them again and try to buy pro versions of apps instead of upgrades in future. Couple examples are overcast, infuse, genius scan.

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