Our Complete Guide to Apple’s Family Sharing

What Is Family Sharing and Why You Should Set it Up

  • Manage parental controls and take full advantage of Apple’s Screen Time for devices running iOS 12
  • Share any content downloaded through the iTunes Store or App Store, so you only have to pay for content once
  • Track your child, or more specifically, your child’s device location
  • See which apps your child has downloaded on his or her iPhone or iPad  
  • Approve your child’s app downloads and purchases remotely with the Ask to Buy’ feature
  • Join Apple Music Family Plan

Setting up an Apple ID allows your child to:

  • Download and make purchases from the App and iTunes Store; purchases are kept separate from other family members
  • Make and receive Facetime calls, send and receive messages in iMessage and send and receive emails in Mail.  
  • Find your device when its lost by signing into your iCloud account (Find my iPhone must be enabled on each family member’s device).

In the process of creating an Apple ID, an iCloud email will be generated and you

will select a password. These log-in credentials are needed to sign into your

child’s iCloud account.

  • iCloud is essentially storage space for all data.
  • Photos, videos, notes, contacts, calendar, downloads etc. are all backed up to iCloud and can be accessed via your iCloud account  
  • If syncing is enabled, iCloud keeps your data updated across devices, so that changes made on one device appear on all others

An Apple ID, iCloud account and iTunes account are essentially synonymous.

  • A credit card on file that will be charged when family members make a purchase.
    • Add or confirm a card

Requirements

  • Update your iPhone/iPad to iOS 12 This triggers the tooltip
  • Family Sharing requires each family member to have an Apple ID. For children under 13, you can only create an Apple ID by activating Family Sharing.  
  • hello ….

How to set up Family Sharing 

 

The parent who initially sets up Family Sharing will be the The Organizer and will be the point person for making changes.  

  • From your iOS device, go to Settings > Your Profile (at top) and tap
  • Tap Set Up Family Sharing.
  • You’ll be asked if you want to be the Organizer. Confirm that you do and that you’ve signed in with your own Apple ID

Follow the onscreen instructions.

Decide which Family Sharing features you want to activate:

  • iTunes & App Store Purchases:
    • Click on Set Up Purchase Sharing
    • To confirm your account, click Continue
    • Then again click Continue on the Shared Payment page; this enables purchase sharing across the family

HIFAF Recommendation

Content Restrictions will be applied according to how you set them for your child.  However, if you still have apps, movies, or TV shows that you wouldn’t want your child to access, then you can turn off Share Purchases

  • Location Sharing 

Allow your family members to see where you are (or at least where your phone is) whenever it’s online using Messages, Find My Friends, or Find My iPhone.

  • Screen Time
    1. Click on Add Child if your child already has an Apple ID

OR                                      

    1. Click on Create a Child Account (for Children under 13)
    2.  Choose your child’s birth date and click Next
    3. Click Agree to the Parent Privacy Disclosure
    4. Confirm your CVV and enter the name and last name for your child
    5. Make a child’s iCloud email and click Create

Note: if you child is over 13, go to id.apple.com and select Create Your Apple ID at the top right of the page.

Now you can invite other family members to join the group.

2. From your Profile, click Add a Family Member.

  • Enabling Ask to Buy

If you’re going to give your child the freedom to explore the App Store, but want to approve purchases before they are made, you can turn on the Ask to Buy feature.

  1. Under your Profile, tap your family member’s name.
  2. Tap Ask to Buy

If you’d like to add another Parent or Guardian to approve purchases, do this by going to:

  • Your profile > Family Sharing > tap the person’s name
  • Toggle on Parent or Guardian

HIFAF Recommendation:

Generally, we find Ask to Buy more than a bit clunky.  Between you and your child, you will be asked for your Apple ID password 4 times.  While the process is slightly smoother if you have Touch ID, some families still appreciate the Ask to Buy feature, especially if they are approving remotely.  

How to Transfer Purchases using Family Sharing

  • Click on the App Store from your home screen
  • Click on the Profile Picture on the top of the screen

You can easily see everything your child has previously downloaded on his or her device, and you can zero in on which apps are not already on your device.

  • Click on the child whose downloads / purchases you wish to review
  • Click on ‘Not this iPhone’ if you want to download those apps to your device  

 

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