Family Sharing Brings Useful New Features to iOS 8

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Multi-device households are becoming the norm and now there is going to be a new way to handle the sharing of purchases and content between family members. This is a must-explore feature that is going to revolutionize how families use iOS.

The biggest change is that up to six different users can be linked together to form a family, which can subsequently share a lot of different content. This includes movies, music, TV shows, books, and apps. Up until now I have had to put my own account on the kid’s iPad which meant that if they figured out my password they could get into all of my stuff. But since anytime they wanted a new app or a movie I had to enter my personal password, this has been a huge pain. Those days are going to disappear and I will never miss them.

Sharing content is just one part of this new feature set. You can also use a bigger version of Find My Phone, with all users on a single map. Tracking children as they grow into teenagers and being able to manage their devices is a very nice touch.

If a child wants to buy a song or an app, then they can request access to the family credit card which sends a request to mom or dad for approval. This is so much easier than having to be there at the device to enter passwords with the kids asking for new stuff.

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Perhaps the most used new feature is going to be the family shared calendar, which brings everything into a shared space for planning and organization. If you kids are as busy as mine then a shared space for tracking everything is critical. We manage right now, but this is going to make it even easier.

While not everyone is going to find the new Family Sharing features useful, there are certainly many that will and everyone is going wonder how we ever lived without it.

About Sam: Teacher, writer, composer, and family man. Maker of delicious Halušky. Contact me via Twitter: @Sam_Denver