Apple reveals more Family Sharing details

Apple reveals more Family Sharing details 1

Apple has set up a FAQ within iTunes Connect for Family Sharing in iOS 8, and it reveals more details about the upcoming feature. The feature lets up to six family members share iTunes, Books, and App Store content through the credit card of one adult with an Apple ID, referred to as “the family organizer” in the FAQ. The FAQ notes that if a family member leaves the group, “their purchases — including any purchases made while part of the Family — will no longer be available to the remaining family members, and vice versa.”

Apple reveals more Family Sharing details 2

It’s also notable that in-app purchases cannot be shared with family members — apps that only allow access of most content through an in-app purchase will be far less useful for those accessing the app through Family Sharing. Further details can be seen in the included screenshot.

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  1. I think this feature may be DOA. If devs have to opt in to explicitly let people use the same app on many devices for no extra charge, and if families aren’t able to share IAPs, I don’t really see much incentive to use it on either end of the transaction. People will just continue to share the same iTunes account.

  2. @dj12 (#1): Well, based on the FAQ above, I don’t think it’s so much that developers have a choice, but simply that they have to agree to new contract terms before the feature is enabled. Sooner or later — probably by the time iOS 8 is released — I expect devs will be forced to agree to those terms one way or another. So it’s not really an “opt-in” thing for developers, but rather just a fact that there’s a new agreement in place for how it’s handled.

    That said, the IAP limitation is certainly more worrisome. Hopefully developers who have previously built free/paid versions of their apps by leveraging IAPs will create and/or continue to offer standalone versions that can be bought in the traditional manner. Still, unless Apple puts in warnings for end users explaining that IAPs cannot be shared before allowing users to make them, there are going to be a lot of people caught by this restriction.

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