Gary Bacon

Merge Apple IDs for iCloud to "Just Work"

Merge Apple IDs for iCloud to “Just Work”

Followup Post

Check out my followup post, iCloud and Apple IDs – Quick Fix for a fast solution to this problem.

Please Apple, let us merge Apple IDs for use with the upcoming iCloud service.

My Situation

In 2003, when the iTunes Store was announced, I was overly thrilled. I purchased music then and have continued to do so since. I believe I’m at well over $6,000 worth of movies, music and apps. Little did I know, I had created an Apple ID.

In 2006, I decided to get a Dot Mac account. It provided email and great hosting. Then it morphed to what we know now as Mobile Me. At the time when I originally signed up, I had no idea it would also be an Apple ID.

On top of this, my iTunes Apple ID has my Mobile Me Apple ID email associated with it. I couldn’t change my iTunes Apple ID username to be my Mobile Me email address because it is considered to be a pre-existing Apple ID.

Still with me?

The Breakdown

iTunes Match, the ability to re-download music, over the iTunes backup and air syncing. None of which I can really do. My purchases are on one ID and the “cloud” will be on the other ID ( former Mobile Me ). And without providing too much detail, I’ve been running into errors on iOS 5 with this.

I managed to tell the Store ( Settings > Store ) what my iTunes Apple ID is. That is a current feature for iOS 4. But the iCloud portion I’m having difficulties with. And as for the initial Welcome setup, I had to use my me.com email address. Out of the box, it did not have my previous purchases.

Fix It

I contacted Apple Developer Support with the issue. I figured this was the best route as iOS 5 is still in beta. My representative had very little knowledge of iOS 5 and iCloud. It was a day old. He did manage to tell me, in his department there is no way to merge accounts. Then suggested I email it as a bug request or feature request. Others that have contacted Apple Customer Support have been told the same.

I’m not the only one with this issue. I’ve spoken with a few friends in similar situations. And I’ve found a ton of supporting threads online. This has to be fixed before iCloud launches. Otherwise it will not “Just Work”.

Next Steps and Related Items

Please email Apple requesting they allow users to merge Apple IDs and purchase histories. The more users they hear from the better the situation will get.

Send Apple Feedback here.

Update

Macrumors reports that:

“…reader Robert emailed Apple CEO Tim Cook about the issue, and quickly received a phone call from an Apple executive relations employee. She had spoken to the team responsible for Apple IDs and acknowledged that they understood the issue and that more people would run into the problem with iCloud. She also repeated that there is no way yet to combine accounts but revealed they are working on it.

Good news! They at least acknowledge that the problem exists and are working to resolve it.

Trying to Merge iCloud, Mobile Me, Dot Mac, and iTunes with Apple ID, sheds more light on this as well.