Making sense of shared apple accounts, icloud accounts, and backups... how do I do it

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Sean Dempsey, Nov 14, 2013.

  1. Sean Dempsey macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    I am not exactly sure what i am trying to do, but what I want is

    1. My wife and I to continue to share the same iTunes/app store ID to we get the same purchses/apps etc.

    2. Have both of us able to backup our phones to the 55gb iCloud subscription I have under my ID

    3. Have her have her own iCloud id for separate messsaging etc, but keep the same itunes stoire ID but also be able to backup to my cloud.

    Is this possible? I had hoped that the iCloud backup storage could be used by a family, but is that not the case? If I want it separate, would I need a 2nd icloud subscription?

    Also - keeping our contacts and photos separate etc. Or is trying to share an iCloud account just not possible for 2 people who want to keep things separated?
  2. iphone46 macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2011
    Number 3 is possible. Go to settings->messages->Send & Recieve at. Tap the Apple ID and sign out. If she doesn't need to get iMessage for an email address or want to receive iMessages on other devices that's all you need. Otherwise, tap the sign in and make her an iMessage account

    Also to keep contact separate either you or her could turn off contacts in icloud and use a different service(Gmail) to sync contacts. You can even import current icloud contacts to gmail
  3. AFDoc macrumors 68030

    Jun 29, 2012
    Colorado Springs USA for now
    I typically don't have a major issue with iTunes but I do with the fact that you can't have several people on the same account and have them "separate".
  4. PNutts macrumors 601


    Jul 24, 2008
    Pacific Northwest, US
    I think what you're trying to do is possible, give this a try:

    1. iTunes/app store ID is easy. Just log into the app store on both iDevices with the ID
    2. For the backup, on both iDevices go to Settings - iCloud and log into iCloud using your ID.
    3. For you, you don't need to do anything else. Your iDevice will have all your iCloud info. For the wifey, go into Settings - iCloud and turn off Mail, Contacts, Calendars, Reminders, Safari, Notes, Passbook, Keychain, Photos. Then go to Settings - Mail, Contacts, Calendars, tap Add Account, tap iCloud, and then enter your wife's separate iCloud credentials (not your Apple ID used for iTunes and not your iCloud ID). Make sure all the options in that account are turned on (Mail, Contacts, etc.).

    Messaging and Facetime will be set up on each iDevice with either your or your wife's iCloud ID.

    I have my kids' iCloud accounts on my iPhone so my iDevices are set up the same as yours except my kids' iDevices are not logged into my iCloud account to share backup storage so that's the one piece I haven't done.

    If you decide to not share backup storage your wife will use her iCloud ID to log into iCloud on her own device as in step 2 above.

    If you don't back up photos to iCloud you may not need that much storage. I back up my photos to my PC and in between backups I rely on PhotoStream to safeguard my photos. Speaking of PhotoStream, that will be comingled.
  5. FotoDirk macrumors member

    Apr 5, 2010
    I don't see the value add of having your wife backup to the same apple-id as yours? Why don't you use a separate apple-id on both iPhones each with its own contacts, photostream, calendar, backup, iMessage.....

    Use the common apple-id for purchages of apps, music, books...

    You can share calendars and photostream if wanted.
    By using 2 apple-ids as the iCloud id on the phone you will both have the 5Gb of iCloud storage.
  6. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    I used to advocate iCloud sharing, but too many apps and serves are starting to assume that "1 account = 1 person" and so it's becoming more untenable.

    Here's my current suggestion for you:

    1) Get each of you your very own personal "this is just for me" iCloud account. Get the 25 GB plan for each of you for $40. (That's slightly less space than you have now, but is hopefully ok. And it is cheaper than what you pay now.) (You can downgrade your account's plan, I don't literally mean you have to get 2 NEW accounts, just that you end up with 2 separate ones.)

    2) If you want to share something (like contacts) then put your iCloud account on her phone as a secondary account and enable contacts on that and disable them on her main iCloud account. (My wife and I share contacts this way. We shared calendars by subscribing to each other's calendars, but you could share calendars this way too if you want.)

    3) Check that iMessages and Facetime are logged into each of your personal accounts. Check that the App Store and iTunes Store are logged into whatever account you originally used for those on all devices.


    Separate Photo-streams - We liked having them linked. But not anymore! I've got no good solution here.

    Separate iWork Docs - I'm hoping they eventually expand the ability to share documents. This is getting better all the time, I think it will eventually not be a problem.

    Separate 'Find my Phone' - You have to log into her account to find her phone and your account to find yours. Not a huge deal, but it's just something to remember.

    = = = = =

    So it's not perfect, but my list of flaws in the "share an iCloud account plan" just keeps growing. So I think the balance has shifted this way for good.
  7. AlphaHumanus macrumors 6502a

    Feb 12, 2012
    This has been a problem in my family for awhile now. They should implement some type of family iTunes account. I'd pay money to be able to link my wife and sons accounts with my own to share our movies/music/etc. more fluidly. Even just like a once a year or $$ fee to switch/establish "families" w/1st time free.

    Currently we purchase everything on my appleID and thats what the ATV is logged into as well. My son has my old i4 still logged in as me, with restrictions. that way he and I only purchase a game once. It doesn't solve all my problems.

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