by Shane Roberts
iOS 8 is continuing to build on the foundation laid by the radically redesigned iOS 7, that was released last year. One feature that is going to be handy, especially for families out there, is “Family Sharing.”
There has always been the issue of families having multiple Apple ID’s, credit cards, and just general account confusion. With Family Sharing in iOS 8 that should straighten out a lot of that confusion.
Here is how Apple explains Family Sharing -
“Family Sharing is a new way to bring harmony to your family’s digital life. Up to six people in your family can share purchases from iTunes, iBooks, and the App Store without sharing accounts. Pay for family purchases with the same credit card and approve kids’ spending right from a parent’s device. Easily share photos, a family calendar, and more to help keep everyone connected.”
Basically, someone in the family sends out invites to other members of the family to set up sharing. You can then set parameters of what certain family members can have access to. Once you have that set up, all of your purchases can come from one credit card and kids can ask for permission to download items.
Another great feature of Family Sharing is that you can download each others apps, music, movies, and more. That eliminates any need to double purchase anything for your iPhone and your spouses iPhone, or your kids.
Family Sharing also gives seamless access to both Find My Friends and Find My iPhone. Here’s how Apple best describes it with Find My Friends:
Family Sharing can automatically share your location with your family members and show you where they are, too. Now it’s easier than ever to meet up at the park, see if Dad’s on his way home, or keep tabs on your kids throughout the day. Out shopping for a surprise birthday gift? Just hide your location with a tap.
It’s the same story with Find My iPhone. If a member of your family has lost or had their iPhone stolen, you can easily see and lock down anybody’s phone that is in your family.
Family members will also be able to share other items like pictures in a unified photo album and have a joint family calendar as well.
Family Sharing is a great feature, and could clean up a lot of confusion for people that like to share info and purchases.
Family Sharing will be available this fall when the free update to iOS 8 launches.