How to Setup Family Sharing in iOS 8

Buying apps can get expensive, especially if you’ve got family members all using the same credit card. What was a $2 app can quickly balloon into $10! When you factor in music, movies, and books — the cost can get out of hand. To end the multiple spending, Apple has created Family Sharing, which lets you share that media across devices.

Best of all, it gives parents more control over what the kids spend without the trouble of buying gift cards. Just remember, whoever starts the Family Group is in charge of it. Here’s how to set it up:

1. Head into your Settings app.


2. Select “iCloud”.


3. Up top is the “Set Up Family Sharing” option. Select that.


4. This screen is basically confirmation that you’re in charge. Click “Continue”.


5. This new screen asks you to acknowledge you will be the one paying for purchases. If you don’t have a form of payment on file, you’ll need one.


6. Part of Family share is the ability to share your location. Choose here if you want to do that.


7. Now you can add family members. All invitations are sent via email address, and your family members must have an iOS device with iOS 8 or better.


There are a few things to keep in mind with Family Sharing. First, apps and media won’t automatically download to every device. Anything purchased by the family will show up under the “Purchased” tab in the App Store, iBooks, and iTunes. If you want to keep some of the purchases private (like an app that may tip someone off to a gift they want sometime in December), you can keep them private by hiding them.

Another thing to know is that parents can control purchases of children. Once the kids are in your Family group, just select their name in the Family Sharing menu under iCloud in Settings (the same way you navigated there to set this up), and choose “Ask to Buy”. Now every time junior wants to buy an app or song, you’ll have to give the go-ahead.

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Another thing you’ll notice about Family Sharing is that a family folder will appear in your Photos app. Anyone in the family group can upload pics there to share with everyone else. there will also be a family view in calendar, so you can all contribute to planning events.

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Maybe the coolest feature of Family Sharing — aside from not buying apps and such several times — is location sharing. If you choose to share your location with the family group, it will appear in the Find my Friends app, or via Messages.

Family sharing is a really wonderful tool for families and groups, but just remember you can’t jump in and out; Apple limits you to one group at a time, and only two groups per year.

Are you using Family Sharing yet? Do you love it? Let us know in the comments section below!

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