Yet another sharing-an-iPad question
May 5, 2020 2:19 PM   Subscribe

I'm thinking about getting an iPad to use for illustration and noodling around with animation, but until I can justify it I've been borrowing my partner's iPad in the evenings, when he's done using it for work. I'd like to buy a few apps (Procreate, for one). How can I avoid re-purchasing those apps when (or if) I get my own iPad?

Ideally I'd rather buy them using my Apple ID, though it seems like that's not really possible to do on someone else's iPad, correct? It also sounds like he could purchase them for me, then later share them with me using Family Sharing. Are there any drawbacks to that approach, if it is actually workable? It seems like I might not be able to make in-app purchases of, say, brush sets for Procreate with this system? Would Family Sharing also require him to authorize all my app purchases going forward? (That wouldn't be the end of the world, but it'd kind of be a pain in the ass for us both.) Are there any other possibilities I'm not thinking of?

For what it's worth, though I've been a Mac user for fifteen years, all my other devices are Android and I've never used iCloud or other Apple services -- so there's a lot about the interconnectedness of the Apple ecosystem that's unfamiliar to me, and I expect I'll have a followup Ask along the lines of "Apple devices, how do they work?"
posted by tapir-whorf to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Ideally I'd rather buy them using my Apple ID, though it seems like that's not really possible to do on someone else's iPad, correct?

Well, you can sign-out from the AppStore, so that would seem to infer that someone else could log-in under a different account. Theoretically, you could log-in using your account and purchase the apps you want. Apps are tied to your account, so you should be able to re-download them onto your new future iPad.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:32 PM on May 5, 2020 [1 favorite]


I would think that family sharing applies here.
posted by oceano at 2:34 PM on May 5, 2020 [1 favorite]


Well, you can sign-out from the AppStore, so that would seem to infer that someone else could log-in under a different account. Theoretically, you could log-in using your account and purchase the apps you want. Apps are tied to your account, so you should be able to re-download them onto your new future iPad.

I'm so curious about this -- if anyone's done it, please say more! Would I have to log out when I'm done so that he can log in the next morning in order to be able to use apps he'd purchased on his App Store account? Or are all apps downloaded to the physical device accessible to whomever's using it, no matter which App Store account they're tied to?

Regarding Family Sharing, it's not entirely clear to me how much it would make him responsible for authorizing purchases made on my own iPad, with my Apple ID, later on. Or how much default surveillance or authority he'd have over my iPad use (eventually, if I buy one). I don't think either of us really wants that on principle, though in practice we'd be okay with it if need be.
posted by tapir-whorf at 2:39 PM on May 5, 2020


I've done this while trying to figure out how to keep my own account and my small business's account separate, but still use the apps that I bought the company before I had made a separate account for it. I have been able to log out one account from the app store, log in as another, buy an app, and then continue using it regardless of who is logged in. If the ipad gets wiped or something I can't redownload it without shuffling accounts again, and I don't know whether you can download updates for apps that another account bought (I'd guess "no" with like a 60% confidence).

That was like 4 months ago so it probably still works the same.
posted by aubilenon at 2:45 PM on May 5, 2020 [1 favorite]


I've done this. When my father died in 2011 I inherited his iPad and, kinda, his apps. Apple says you're not supposed to do this but whatever. What this means is that I have access to his apps on any device where I sign in with his AppleID. So what this means realistically is that when I update my apps, if I just click "Update all" and one of his apps is in the queue to update, my iPhone or iPad will prompt me for his password in order to update that app. Only a slight inconvenience. I don't know what happens in the world of TouchID because this all happened before that was an option.

tl;dr: you can have multiple AppleIDs that can purchase apps for a single device.
posted by jessamyn at 4:38 PM on May 5, 2020 [1 favorite]


my partner and I have family sharing. I don’t have to authorize what he buys, but I do have to pay for it- all purchases go to my credit card. I get an email saying what he purchased. He doesn’t get notified when I buy something.

We can each download each other’s stuff, but it isn’t automatic.
posted by Valancy Rachel at 6:11 PM on May 5, 2020


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