How to Set Up Family Sharing to Share Apps, Music, Storage & More
This guide will show you how to set up Family Sharing from an iPhone, iPad or Computer.
Family sharing lets you share your Apps, movies, music, storage and location with your family members, and even includes the option to make an iTunes account for a child that needs your permission to buy apps and make in app purchases.
You need iOS 8 or higher to use this feature and new options are available on iOS 11. You need at least iOS 8 installed on all the devices to make this work. Whoever sets up Family Sharing is the organizer, but you can add other adults and separate kids accounts as well.
It doesn’t matter who signs up, the items you purchased over the last several years on any of the accounts in the family are available. This is retroactive, so if one member of your family is into apps, now everyone can download and use them. Here’s how to set up Family Sharing to start sharing purchases of all kinds with your family members.
iOS Family Sharing Questions
Here are the answers to common Family Sharing questions. First off, you don’t need to be a family that all lives together or is formally recognized as a family in any way. But all purchases go to a single credit or debit card so you don’t want to invite a stranger or even a close friend into your Family Sharing circle.
You can create a child iTunes account to limit purchases. If you do this an adult or guardian account will need to authorize purchases and in app purchases.
Keep in mind this may out your taste in Farmville, or it could also reveal that you purchased the Playboy iPhone app. You can hide iTunes purchases from a Mac or PC to prevent other Family Sharing members from seeing them.
Family Sharing Setup Guide
Setting up Family Sharing only takes a few minutes and the other users don’t need to be in the same room as long as you can trust them to accept an invitation.
You can Setup Family Sharing from a computer, iPhone or iPad. We’ll show you how to set up the service from the iPhone. You need at least iOS 8 which is available for the iPhone 4s and newer and iPad 2 and newer. We recommend running iOS 10 or iOS 11.
Go to Settings -> iCloud to get started. There is a Family Sharing option near the top of the page. Tap on that to start setting up Family Sharing from your iPhone.
As the Organizer you need to tap Continue to set up the family, confirm your credit cared and take care of other settings.
You confirm that you want to share iTunes, iBooks and App Store Purchases. Tap Continue if you are in the account you want to use. This will link to the credit card you are using to buy apps, you can change this later, but for now you need to tap Continue.
Now you can choose if you want to share your location with Family members. This simplifies the Find My Friends app so family members can easily see where each other are. This is not mandatory.
Next you will see a list of Family Members and an invite sent or resend option. After the other member accepts you will get a notification and you can then choose to mark them as a parent or guardian who can approve requests to buy.
From this screen you can also add more family members and remove family members. The Shared Payment Method is something you can change from this screen as well. You need to enter the security code on this card sometime during this process.
Now you can go to the App Store -> Updates -> Purchased and you’ll see your purchases and an option for another member’s purchases. Tap on either to explore apps you can download. You can also access the books, music and movies from family members in a similar fashion.
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