Moving from a shared iCloud to individual accounts
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I have an iPhone and my kids each have an iPod touch. I originally set up all three devices to use the same Apple ID. Now I want to change that so our e-mails and contacts are not synched, among other reasons. How can I change the Apple ID on the iPod touches without changing my Apple ID on my iPhone?
A: Basically it sounds like what you need to do here is simply to configure your kids’ iPod touch devices to use a different iCloud account from the one you are using on your iPhone.
You can easily change the Apple ID used for iCloud on any iOS device simply by going into the iCloud section in the Settings app and tapping the Delete Account button at the bottom of that screen.
This will remove the iCloud account from that device along with all data stored for that account: Mail, Notes, Passbook items, Photo Streams and Documents and Data will automatically be removed; for Calendars, Contacts, Reminders and Safari data (bookmarks and reading list) you will be given the choice to either keep a local, non-synced copy on your device or remove it as well. The device will also be unregistered from using Apple’s Find my… feature and will no longer make any new backups to that iCloud account, although the previous iCloud backup will be retained.
Once you’ve done this, you can then proceed to sign in with a different Apple ID for iCloud or even create a new one directly from your device. A new account will start with its own free 5GB of iCloud storage and an empty slate. If you chose to keep your calendars, contacts, reminders and Safari data when you deleted the original iCloud account you will be given the option to merge that data with the new iCloud account, otherwise you’re basically starting from scratch in terms of that data.
Note that you don’t need to change anything on your iPhone—you can keep using the same Apple ID for iCloud there and none of these changes on the iPod touches will affect the data on your iPhone; it will simply no longer be shared among your kids’ devices.
If you do want to share certain items between iCloud accounts, such as using a common Photo Stream, it is possible to set this up simply by using multiple iCloud accounts on each device—one for the shared, “family” information, and another for each user’s personal information. See Sharing iTunes & iCloud Accounts in a Family for more information on how to do this.
Note also that none of this affects the Apple IDs used for other services on your iPhone or your kids’ iPod touch devices. Features such as iMessage, FaceTime, Game Center and iTunes can use a different Apple ID, so you can continue sharing a single Apple ID or switch your kids over to using their new iCloud Apple ID for any of those features that you don’t want to share. For example, it is generally a good idea for each person to have their own Apple ID for things like iMessage and FaceTime, but often several members in a family will use the same Apple ID for the iTunes Store in order to share purchased content or an iTunes Match subscription. See our Guide to FaceTime + iMessage for more suggestions on how to set this up in terms of those particular services.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple rolling out ‘Today at Apple’ educational courses starting in May
- Smart home device maker iDevices acquired by Hubbell
- Apple delays ‘Carpool Karaoke’ release to ‘later this year’
- Dutch court rules Apple can’t replace broken iPads with refurbished models
- Chinese blog claims Apple is only releasing two iPhone 8 models, no iPhone 7s or 7s Plus
- Apple releases fourth betas of iOS 10.3.2, watchOS 3.2.2, and tvOS 10.2.1
- Images claim to show iPhone 8 prototype with glass back, vertical camera
- Apple works on alternative power sources, new uses for waste heat in Denmark data center
- Training documents reveal safety details about Apple’s self-driving car system
- Supply shortfalls of upgraded components may delay iPhone 8 production to October/November
- iDevices Wall Switch
- iDevices Wall Outlet
- Koogeek Wi-Fi SmartSocket for Apple HomeKit
- Sony MDR-1000X Wireless Noise-Canceling Headphones
- FiiO i1 Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Adapter
- Blue Ella Headphones
- Apple iPad (Fifth-Generation)
- AudioQuest NightOwl Carbon Headphones
- ExoLens PRO with Optics by ZEISS Wide-Angle Lens Kit
- Blue Sadie Headphones
- Top Five: The Best Products for Building a Smart Home with HomeKit
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of watchOS 3
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 10
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 10
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Photos gets Advanced Computer Vision
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Music app delivers ‘clarity and simplicity’
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Maps gets a major redesign
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 shakes up the user experience
- Inside the betas: watchOS 3 promises a real speed boost
- Inside the betas: A sneak peek at what’s new in tvOS 10