iCloud transition off to a rocky start for some MobileMe, family users

“Apple’s transition from MobileMe to iCloud brings the promise of centralized, cloud-based storage for all your important data,” Chris Foresman reports for Ars Technica.

“Unfortunately, the transition hasn’t been smooth for all users,” Foresman reports. “Aside from Apple’s servers being overloaded with MobileMe account transitions, some are having issues reconciling Apple’s assumption that every user has a unique Apple ID and that every Apple ID is used for just one person.”

Foresman reports, “People who never used MobileMe and only ever used one Apple ID for iTunes purchases appear to be experiencing a completely smooth transition to iCloud. We haven’t heard of any serious complaints from users in this scenario. It’s the users with more than one Apple ID, users who have shared an Apple ID with family members, and users transitioning from MobileMe, however, who have reported a variety of problems making the jump to the cloud.”

“Despite the annoyance, some careful planning and a little patience can solve the problems for many users,” Foresman reports. “It’s definitely best to keep in mind that iCloud works best when each user has a unique Apple ID. There is still no fix for those who would like to merge multiple Apple IDs into one, but after talking with support staff, it looks like Apple might still be working on a solution.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. There is an amount of confusion regarding the relation between an Apple ID (which can be an e-mail address, a MobileMe address a .mac address, or a string of characters), and a MobileMe account.

    Eventually, this will all be sorted out. Until then, forums will be alive with frustration venting, articles will be posted on blogs and news sites, and noise will be made. When you sell four million of something in one weekend, you simply cannot avoid such a problem.

    1. Its a crappy experience.
      I have multiple Apple IDs. Not by choice, but because previous crappy Apple services forced me to create them. GSX isn’t working – create a new account, Developer account not working – create a new account. Moved from UK to US – create a new account for some services. What a joke.
      I want to merge my Apple IDs. I’m sick of entering multiple passwords for multiple accounts.
      This kind of experience is not ‘Apple like’ at all.

      1. Appropriately you called yourself iFailure, because you did indeed created your own problems, by creating new Apple IDs when it was not necessary. Don’t blame Apple for that.

          1. This is not a problem with iFailure at all. Like many others, I, too, have multiple accounts which I would like to merge. There are several perfectly legitimate reasons why people ended up with multiple ID’s. Even maxing out on extra iDisk space, some people would have wanted even more, and chose to stay with Apple. That would require a second (or third) account. Needing multiple email addresses (for whatever purpose), would also mean needing an extra account since a single account restricts those how many you can have. People with those needs, who chose to stay with Apple, ended up with multiple accounts. And there are NUMEROUS other reasons people ended up with multiple accounts.

            Why are you bashing iFailure? It only tells me that you, yourselves, are not heavy users or you’d have a need for more ID’s yourself. Or, did you simply use some non-Apple solution?

            Say you’re sorry.

        1. Not so quick with the judgment. Apple somehow managed to create a separate Apple ID from my user name in iTunes. Before I realized there were two accounts assigned to my name, with the same password no less, a number of apps were purchased under that new ID. Now, anytime those apps are updated, I have to sign in to the other account to download the update. Back and forth. I have tried repeatedly to have the iTunes group fix, or at least acknowledge the problem they somehow created.. “Deaf Ears” would be one description of their response.

          Also, I know several level 4 types on Apple’s Discussion Forum (I’m also a L4) who had to set up new ID’s to participate in an Apple led discussion group. There was a lot of dissatisfaction about having to do so. And, quite possibly, Apple’s varied practices and screw-ups with ID’s are now going to prove problematic, at least in the short term.

    2. I agree that this is not like Apple. I remember Steve saying with that sarcastic tone, “After all, we’re the people who gave you MobileMe!” I expected better. They should have looked at their MobileMe user base and seen that there was a significant portion of folks who were in the one-to-many or the family pack option and they should have had better instructions/transitions. My daughter lost nearly all of her email and her high game scores on her iPhone. You can say, that it was the operator’s (me) fault, but that’s a typical Windows excuse. Not an Apple excuse.

      1. I just scrapped my Mobile Me account. Moved my email by copying all the folders, moved my calendars and my contacts I think just worked. The Mobile Me account is still active, I just won’t use it.

  2. Rocky hardly describes the feeling when the wireless iCloud backup is not useable for some incomprehensible reason, this after you have to reset phone because upgrade resulted in poor battery performance

  3. My daily calls to Apple Care since iCloud was launched have failed to get it working for me. Sr. tech guys there say it’s a nightmare for MobileMe converters. This is what happens when Apple takes on to many things at once. Excuses don’t matter. Like everyone else, I want it to just work.

  4. My contacts were reproduing faster than horny rabits. Sometimes I would have 50 new contacts per minute. My sister has all of her pictures reproducing.

    This is besides the fact that wi-fi itunes sync doesn’t work. I lost all of my music.

    And my dad had his ipad so screwed up he had to start over. Which was the only way I could fix my phone. The music player based on my old backups would just crash.

    I wish steve jobs was around to kick some ass.

    1. I have had HUNDREDS of duplicate and extra contacts. I would like to be able to get rid of them. Will iCloud have a solution? In theory, I should be able to sync and use iTunes to eliminate duplicates. That has been a failing remedy. Was it your rabbits, Rodger, that escaped into my Contacts?

  5. I used MobileMe, but only used one Apple ID. And it’s just me using it. I did not have any problems with the conversion.

    However, I sometimes get an error message from Mail that says my password was rejected by the server, and I can’t access my email. It seems to be a problem with access to the server, because after a while, the problem goes away by itself. I guess its a symptom of “overloading.” Hope it goes away permanently…

    1. Same here, had ME account, one ID, the conversion process worked like a charm, and likewise for my wife, multiple machines. I have once gotten the iCloud SMTP password error, filled it in as requested, no more problem. A lot of things had to come together at the same time, surely it is a heavy load, at the same time as everyone trying to come to terms with Steve passing on.

        1. Both. My Apple Id was “userid@mac.com” from years ago, and I had later created the ME account with the same userid. I started by entering the .mac.com, and as the conversion proceeded it displayed both.

          The only issue I had was that after conversion the Mail app displayed the (old) ME inbox contents, with the account preferences reset to the iCloud SMTP. When I used Safari to log in to the iCloud inbox and change some folders, the changes did not display in that old ME inbox. I saw a tip somewhere to just delete the old ME account from Mail preference and create the new iCloud account. All I had to do to create the iCloud account in Mail was to enter my Apple ID and it filled in the rest of the settings automatically. All’s working fine.

  6. Only complaint about the entire iCloud..
    Photo stream. Take a bad pic? It’s sent to photo stream, accidental pic.. Same.
    Delete from device you took pic with, fine. But you CAN’T delete the photo from photo stream, ever. Wait 30 days for it to be removed, or wipe all of photo stream, or take 1000 more pics to remove it.

    Beyond that, iCloud is working 100% as described.

    1. I wouldn’t mind the fact you can’t delete, IF it wasn’t being something you would use on multiple devices especially Apple TV. I’m not going to want to show people a stream of photos full of multiple shots of effectively the same thing, or just plain bad shots. If it was a raw backup of your camera roll as you took them and you could then organise them, restore them, as you see fit outside (and even stream them) then fine, but it’s trying to almost be two things.

  7. Mobile Me aside, it seems pretty logical that if you have an account used for purchases, and then that account has email, calendars and contacts facilities added to it, that if you’re previously used the account for more than one person, then the added facilities are going to get shared between those people. Simple answer is to use more than one account and a shared one for purchases.

    My only problem was getting iOS 5 to load, but third time lucky is has worked fine.

    Previously I’d used separate Apple ID’s for iTunes and Mobile Me but I’ve only upgraded the iTunes one and manually migrated my email by just copying them over IMAP. Contacts worked automatically on my Mac and in turn propagated to my iOS devices. I exported my calendars and just reloaded them onto iCloud – in the process deleting some old ones I didn’t use any more.

    When doing my brother’s phone yesterday I just moved his Mobile Me/iTunes account and it worked fine.

    1. When I did the upgrade and transition Tuesday.. It went ok. A few hiccups with getting everything done. Cause as we found out, 25mllion were doing the same…
      Last night I did the same for my mom, went smooth.

  8. I had a MobileMe account for a while, until I had to pay for it, and then I cancelled it. To my delight, when I registered with iCloud I got my original @me.com email address back, which is great. One issue, which I think I’ve resolved, is when I emailed a link to a website to someone, instead of using my original primary email addy that’s my Apple ID it went via iCloud mail and failed, but what I hadn’t realised was I needed to set iCloud to include my other two email accounts in its listing, so that should be sorted now. Just debugging, really.

  9. I have to consider myself lucky. I transitioned to iCloud from MobileMe on launch day without a problem. I do only have one apple ID so maybe that’s why I had success.
    However, I don’t know if wireless back up is happening. Is there a way to check when it was backed up last?

  10. Digging the new features of iCloud so far, but really wish they would have ported MobileMe Gallery somehow. The ability to create an online album of select, edited images for friends and family to view via browser or iOS device, including Apple TV, was extremely useful. Now it seems you are limited to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or some other 3rd party solution and none of them are as slick as MobileMe Gallery.

    Yes, I know I can still use the MM Gallery feature thru next year. I’m just hoping Apple offers something comparable via iCloud before we get evicted.

    Thoughts? Good options?

    1. I wish.

      I too would like to see something to replace the Gallery. A slicker looking photo hosting site doesn’t exist, especially one so easy to use.

      My hope is that now that iCloud is launched, they can concentrate on a replacement for it before next year.

      Hopefully, especially since Photo Stream is NOT what Gallery was, and cannot replace it.

  11. Apple has yet to address several longstanding bugs in MobileMe. One of these bugs is intermittent failure of emails to get to the Sent folder if you change any text in subject line when replying. Another bug: iDisk crashes my Finder almost every time I use it. After MobileMe admitted that they had no idea why attachments kept failing they advised me to avoid accessing MobileMe mail from my browser. All of this iCloud nonsense is just going to further degrade this service.

  12. Well, my iCal is hosed. There is nothing on my calendar because the entries were assigned to groups under MonileMe. And of course I can’t log in to change the group. I am also not receiving invites from my wife’s MBA because I set up the appt. what a fustetcluck. I guess I will spend the day manually entering (now) unlinked emails on my calendar.

    1. Since the instructions said to backup your calendars then you should just be able to import them back into iCloud I think you may need to set up the appropriate calendars/groups first and select the appropriate one though otherwise they’ll just import to the one calendar.

      1. I did back up the GD calendars, smart ass. You can’t get into a calendar archive without the password, which Apple deleted.

        Follow the instructions for yourself prior to sticking your head up your ass, idiot.

        1. I apologize for taking my frustration out on you, but I have backups of backups.

          I don’t do a anything without a backup. When I try to re-import the archive, I am prompted for my .mac password which Apple apparently deleted (no. I did not forget the passwords. It is in gov’t grade databases and backed up twice).

          I hate replies that began with a “talking down to”. Don’t tell me to “RTFM”, or “since the instructions say…”

  13. Several issues remain after my conversion:
    1. I still can’t seem to get Find My Friends to work.
    2. The iPhone duplicated mail boxes for MobileMe & iCloud, but there’s only one account in settings.
    3. After installing iOS5 on my iPad2, the battery keeps draining even though the iPad is sleeping.

  14. I would like to take my aliases and convert them to new separate icloud accounts. This way I will get my emails to my iphone, my wife will get her’s to her iphone and our shared emails will go to both. Right now we have a complex set of rules to move the emails to separate folders. I think that I will have all three on the macbook pro and the imac. we will still use the shared account to buy things on itunes. Has anyone tried this or using multiple icloud accounts on the same device?

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