Explained: What is Apple’s Family Sharing feature, its benefits and how to setup


With Apple’s Family Sharing feature, users can share content, subscriptions, purchases and storage with friends and family members. The feature works across Apple devices — iPhone, iPads and Mac, and allows up to 6 people to be part of the group.
Members can share access to Apple services such as iCloud+, Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Fitness+, Apple News+ and Apple Arcade. They can also share iTunes, Apple Books and App Store purchases, and even a family photo album. Members in the Family Sharing group can even help locate each other’s missing devices.
How to setup Family Sharing
It must be noted that one needs to set up Family Sharing on one device. When done, it will be available on all your devices that are signed in with the same Apple ID. The Setup process begins by one member becoming the Organizer. He/she can then send invites to five other family members to participate. When family members join, they have instant access to the shared content.
To setup Family Sharing on iPhone/iPad,

  • Go to Settings and tap on your name
  • Tap on Family Sharing and click on Get started
  • Choose the feature you want to share and tap Continue
  • Once done, select a payment method and tap on Continue
  • Now, you can start adding people to the group. Tap on Invite Family Members
  • Here, you may be asked to enter the security number for your Shared Payment card. Enter and then tap on Next
  • An iMessage will appear with a link to the Family Sharing invite. Add the person’s name/number and tap on Done

What you can share with others on the Family Sharing group
The list includes

  • Music, films and TV programmes from the iTunes Store or Apple TV app.
  • Books from the Book Store in Apple Books.
  • Apps that you can purchase or download from the App Store.
  • Subscriptions and in-app purchases from participating apps.
  • Subscriptions from Apple, including:
  • Apple One Family and Premier plans
  • Apple Music family subscription
  • Apple Arcade
  • Apple Fitness+
  • Apple News+
  • Apple Podcasts Subscriptions
  • Apple TV+
  • Apple TV channels
  • iCloud+

Group members can also share locations with each other and can help other family members find their devices if they’re missing.