Everything you wanted to know about Apple ID but were too afraid to ask

“Newcomers to the Mac will be requested to register an email address, and some other details, when they first start up OS X,” Johnny Winter reports for Mactuts+. “This email address is often a yourname@mac.com, yourname@me.com or yourname@icloud.com, that can be obtained from Apple specifically for the purpose, or it may be your personal email address such as yourname@yourdomain.tld.”

“What may not be immediately clear to the new Mac owner, or indeed some existing Mac owners, is why Apple wants you to do this,” Winter reports. “An Apple ID is required to download software from the Mac App Store. That’s just part of it’s importance; an Apple ID is used for many other things such as enabling and using iCloud, buying from the Apple online store, making reservations (Genius Bar and Workshops) at an Apple retail store, accessing the Apple Support website and so on. It’s used for lots of things and it’s important that you know why and keep your Apple ID up to date.”

Read more in the full article here.


    1. Hadn’t we all heard the rumor that Apple® was working on letting us combine them? I still do have multiple iTools emails/accts/ID’s that I would love to combine into my primary one – that I never really wanted to be my primary one in the first place. What do we have to do to get Apple® to do something? Refuse to upgrade at the next Hypercard release? Drop our subscription to the AppleWorks newsletter? Maybe those are just the things we can all coordinate doing to get Apple® moving on this!

  1. The issue of combining multiple Apple IDs needs addressing. My brother and his wife have separate IDs, now they are married they want to merge them into one ID but they can’t.

    As time moves forward the ability to merge IDs becomes even more apparent.

    1. Combining IDs has been something people have wanted for years. Apple knows people would like this. So far, no action as far as anyone outside of Apple knows, at least not in terms of actually making this possible.

      However, for the recently married couple, I would advise against merging ID’s It’s much easier to keep purchases separate when you want to with separate ID’s. You can always put someting on more than one device when you want to with separate ID’s, but with one, everything tends to show up everywhere, even when you wish it wouldn’t.

      1. Not sure who gave this a low vote, but I agree with Dennis here – My son used my ID when he first got his iPhone, and I couldn’t wait to get him off of it! It is a major pain! My wife will have her own when she gets her new iPhone this summer, too.

    2. Do they really want to do that? If they combine them then they both start getting each others iMessages. They probably want a single Apple ID to use in the iTunes Store, but they can make purchases from any device using that ID. Other services, like Messages, Mail and Contacts need separate Apple IDs to function in a civilized manner.

  2. I think tiered AppleIDs would be more flexible than merging.

    And the only way I know to get movement on that front is to get state-run Chinese media calling for it.

  3. I have one for my iTunes/AppStore(s) purchases and one for personal mail/iCloud, etc. My wife uses the first one and has a separate one for her personal mail/iCloud stuff.
    Why the hell haven’t I read about this solution from the beginning? It looks like all people aspire to do is merging accounts. Splitting, and, occasional merging of SOME functionality only, seems more appropriate.
    Apple’s explanation on their website isn’t overly helpful either.

    1. VanFrun, you may be unaware of the iTools days when many of our accounts started. Some, like me, ended up with a grunch of accounts. I used different email addresses for different things back then. Many of us don’t necessarily want to lose those old addresses. But we do want them consolidated into perhaps just a couple or three accounts.

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