India is a nation that loves its families. Small families, large families, extended families – they all have a place in our hearts. Whether they are settled abroad or tucked away in one of the small towns in India, we love them equally. And we share everything with them – gossip, news, food, memories, happy moments, sad moments, and now, thanks to Apple, even purchases from iTunes and the AppStore!
That’s right, Apple’s Family Sharing lets you add up to six family members to one group, and the best part is you don’t have to share the same Apple id. Each person on the list can retain his / her own Apple id and yet take advantage of the benefits of the plan.
How Does Family Sharing Work?
It’s pretty simple, actually. Let’s say Papa Bear has a generous heart and wants to share the content of iTunes and the App Store with all of them. He brings Mama Bear, Baby Bear and three other people from his family into the fold and puts them all on the Family Sharing plan. This way, Mama Bear can view and download Papa Bear’s fitness app, while Baby Bear can play the games his mother has bought.
At the same time, Papa Bear is conscious of his responsibilities as a parent. That’s why he’s set up things in a way that purchases made by Baby Bear require his permission. He’s also urged his family to exercise restraint when buying apps because, as organiser of the group, everything is charged to his account. After all, Papa Bear may be generous, but he’s also a reasonable middle-class Indian bear, and he has a budget to follow!
Also, for Family Sharing to work, the entire Bear family has to be using devices running iOS 8 or above. Oh, oh, looks like Papa Bear will have to upgrade his iPhone 4. About time, don’t you think?
What Does Family Sharing Give You
Once the whole family is united under the Family Sharing plan, they will be able to do the following:
- Share music, books, movies, TV shows
- Share photos with other members using Family Photo Stream
- Get access to family calendars while maintaining their own personal calendars
- Share locations
- Use Find My iPhone to locate family members’ devices
Are There Any Limits to Family Sharing
Yes, like all good things, Family Sharing also comes with some limitations. For instance, you are only allowed set up and delete two Family Sharing groups every year. That’s right! Apple takes this thing very seriously and will not have you creating groups willy nilly and then deleting them on a whim. After you’ve deleted the second group, you have to wait a whole year before you’re allowed to create a new one. So, delete members if you have to, but think twice before closing down a group.
Also, the buying restriction we mentioned before cannot be imposed on people over the age of 18. On the other hand, children under the age of 13 will have a child account, which automatically comes with purchase restrictions.
Finally, once you’re removed from a Family Sharing group, you will no longer have access to the apps, music, movies, or TV series you may have downloaded from the account of another member.
It’s true the other way round too. What you bought from your own Apple id, you still own. But nobody else will have access to your past or future purchases, once you’ve been removed from the group.
Now that you’ve discovered the wonders of Family Sharing, it’s time to emotionally blackmail your dad to organise one and bring you, your mother, your sister, and your cousins on board. Then you can download all that you want from the App Store or iTunes. But be considerate and make sure you don’t go overboard on your shopping spree. At the same time, enjoy all the benefits of Family Sharing and spread the love.