Getting ready for Apple’s MobileMe: What happens to your .Mac email address and more

In early July, current .Mac accounts will automatically be upgraded to MobileMe, Apple’s new Internet service for your Mac, iPhone, iPod touch, and even that crappy Windows PC you might be stuck with at school or work (our condolences). MobileMe will have a new home at www.me.com where you will find a suite of web applications that have the familiar look and feel of the applications on your Mac. If you go to mac.com, you will be redirected to the login page at me.com.

For the most seamless experience on your computer, devices, and the Internet, there are a few things Apple recommends that .Mac users should do in advance to prepare for MobileMe:
1. Set up your Mac to sync contacts and calendar.
2. Upgrade your browser to the latest version of Safari, Firefox, or, yuck, Internet Explorer.
3. Watch the MobileMe Guided Tour.

Due to its use of new technologies, MobileMe will only work correctly with Mac OS X version 10.4.11 or later. However, Mac OS X Leopard is strongly recommended to allow users to take full advantage of MobileMe.

Some features are being discontinued: Web access to bookmarks (bookmark sync between your Macs and/or PCs is still supported), iCards, .Mac slides, and support for Mac OS X 10.3 Panther sync:
• MobileMe will continue to sync bookmarks across computers as well as push them to your iPhone and iPod touch. However, after MobileMe goes live you will no longer be able to access the Bookmarks application on the web. If you have any bookmarks stored on .Mac, please be sure to sync your bookmarks with your Mac before this date to avoid losing them. For more info, please see Sync .Mac Bookmarks with Safari before June 30, 2008.
• Pictures in the iDisk pictures folder will still appear in Screen Saver in System Preferences, but the .Mac slides publisher will be no longer be available.
• iCards will be no longer be available. We know, big tragedy.

As a current .Mac member, your @mac.com email will continue to work as it always has, but your account will also be given a new email address @me.com. If you have any email aliases at mac.com, they will also continue to work.

Even if you do nothing, email sent to either address will still arrive in your inbox and you can send email from either address in MobileMe Mail on the web. However, in order to send email from your me.com address in your email client (Mail for Mac OS X, for example), you will need to set up your me.com account in Mail preferences.

You will also be able to use either address as your Apple ID for purchases on the Apple Store, iTunes Store, and Apple print products created with iPhoto or Aperture, as they will be automatically linked. However, they will work separately as an iChat ID. Your @mac.com ID will still work for iChat. Your @me.com ID for iChat will work only as long as your MobileMe subscription is active. Once MobileMe becomes available, you may continue to use your @mac.com ID or your new me.com ID as an Apple ID. Both names will access the same ID.

In order for your iPhone or iPod touch to use MobileMe, you will need to update to software version 2.0 or later via iTunes 7.7 to enable push mail, push contacts, push calendar, and push bookmarks. This software update will be available when MobileMe launches.

Other items of interest:
• Your contacts in .Mac Address Book will be available on MobileMe Contacts.
• All of your existing iDisk files will be available on MobileMe iDisk.
• Backup 3.1.2 will continue to work with MobileMe.
• Your iWeb web site will still be available at the same URLs and will also be given a new URL at me.com.
• Your Web Gallery will still be available at the same URL and will also be given a new URL at me.com.

MobileMe, available on July 11, is a subscription-based service with 20GB of storage for US$99 per year for individuals and $149 for a Family Pack, which includes one master account with 20GB of storage and four Family Member accounts with 5GB of storage each. Users can sign up for a free, 60-day MobileMe trial at http://www.apple.com/mobileme and current .Mac members will be automatically upgraded to MobileMe accounts. MobileMe subscribers can purchase an additional 20GB of storage for $49 or 40GB of storage for $99 annually.

70 Comments

  1. In his close-to-two-hour keynote at the WWDC in San Francisco, Steve Jobs

    discussed the new iPhone 3G, its new price points (very nice!), and highlighting

    some of its new applications (available soon via the developers website that is

    due to be launched shortly), which are sure to get iPhone and Apple enthusiasts

    in general excited about what is coming out this summer. One way I think they

    could certainly improve the iPhone in light of these new development kits, is to

    include speech and/or voice activated applications. In today’s world where

    hands-free laws and sheer convenience seem to be putting a heavy demand on a

    user-friendly interface. What is easier than using just voice to control your

    handset? If you can dictate text messages, emails, conduct searches, dial from a

    contact list, play music and discover hidden applications just by speaking your

    request, I would think this would be some of the most sought after applications

    on any phone – especially the iPhone!

    Both embedded and downloadable applications from Nuance Communications can do

    all of that and more…and they all work on the iPhone. The human voice is a

    powerful thing, and we think it is the next big step for improving the mobile

    device. We are excited to see what is next for the WWDC this week!

  2. Or go on ahead and pick up a retail boxed copy of .Mac 5.0 right now for $69.99 at Amazon and save yourself some money and still get all of the features. Your .Mac account will be upgraded to MobileMe in July for no additional charge anyway.

  3. MobileMe — WWDC 2008.

    ‘The End Run’ — WWDC 2009. [Maybe, Macworld 2010]

    Blammer straps a row of ‘wieners’ to his chest. Lard everywhere.

    iCal it guys. ‘The End Run’, atleast! ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  4. but will there be an expiration date on the .mac email address and eventually we’ll have to migrate over to the @me.com emails??? One of the reasons that I did .mac was so that I’d never have to change my email address ever again. Makes me want to switch to gmail!!!

  5. @MH, Apple have recently introduced an even better enhancement to the world of computing. Unlike on a type writer or word processor, text on a Mac now wraps automatically! You don’t have to hit the return key every time you want to start a new line.

    Ce n’est pas beautiful?

  6. The demise of iCards is pretty awful, especially for me… my girlfriend and I love them,and use them to send each other notes all the time. My cousin used iCards for wedding e-vites to his wedding last year. I can’t imagine this is really s good idea, I mean, iCards were one of the only free e-cards that weren’t stupid, loud, annoying, animated or any of that. Just powerful and pretty images with simple, tasteful font choices… so sad… 🙁

    MDN Word: methods… as in, Apple’s methods of deciding what’s really important have recently strayed far from simple, clean and tasteful… so sad.

  7. What I want to know is if Apple will let me have the main email / Apple ID that I have wanted for several years now.

    Once you have set up a .Mac account, Apple will not let you change the name of the account / main email name without closing the account and opening a new one. Also, if you set up an email alias, then that name is forever removed from available account names. So – if you have an alias and you want that to be your new account name, you’re out of luck.

    Case in point – I set up an iTools account many years ago with the name I was given by my parents. As an alias, I later added chrissyone at mac dot com and began using that as my main email account. Now, since I have already used chrissyone as an alias, not only can I not change it to my main account name, but if I cancel my account at start a new one, I cannot use ChrissyOne at all ever again. I never use the original email account any more as I’ve changed my name (and how).

    I have sent an email to .Mac tech support asking if the migration to MobileMe will offer me any other options on setting up my account the way I want it, but I’m not holding my breath. In the mean time, I’ve taken to using my gmail account more anyway.

    This kind of sucks, Apple. I sure wish you could fix it. Otherwise I’ll have to create an entirely new email name all over again, and I’ll never be able to use ChrissyOne again on your system. I frankly expected more when I signed up for iTools so long ago.

    -c

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