You could be in luck if you’ve ever wished you could share an in-app purchase with your family. Today, Apple announced that it is now possible to share subscriptions and one-time in-app purchases among families; According to The Verge.
You’ll still be the only one that can access them if you purchase a consumable item, like coins in a game, but if you unlock an ad-free or pro version of an app, it could be eligible for the new Family Sharing program.
App developer PSA: it is now possible to enable Family Sharing for IAPs and subscriptions, but you have to turn that on in App Store Connect. For subscriptions, it's under the duration… pic.twitter.com/Hj3NBRN3L0
— Steve Harris (@steveharris) December 3, 2020
Back in June, Apple announced this move with Big Sur, but it’s finally having developers flip the switch to allow sharing of subscriptions and purchases.
Developers would need to turn the switch, however as a manual opt-in is to allow Family Sharing of a subscription or purchase.
It does, however, seem like the feature is slowly rolling out.
If you’re the person buying the family subscriptions, by going to Settings, it’s easy to check which of them has the option to share, then click on your name. Tap Subscriptions from there.
You’ll see a turn labeled Share New Subscriptions at the top of the page. Setting it on will automatically grant access to any qualifying in-app subscriptions you sign up for to your family members.
If you intend to sign up for any embarrassing subscriptions that you think might be shared with mom and dad, for the time being, you may want to turn this off.
You’ll see a list of your new subscriptions under that. Tapping on one will bring you to the Edit Subscription screen, where if the developer has agreed to allow it you will see a Share with Family switch.
Turning it on would grant the subscription access to your family just as if they had purchased it themselves!
The mechanism for exchanging one-time in-app transactions is different, MacRumors has confirmed. For instance, the unlocking of the Pro version of Working Copy is achieved through an in-app payment.
To be able to access it a family member would have to go to the App Store, click in the upper right corner on their account button, go to Purchased, and then pick the family member who purchased the unlock. They’ll have to download the app from that screen afterward.
They will then need to press the Restore Purchases button, depending on how the app is set up. This is a much more involved operation, so I’d love to see any tweaks down the road.
If your favorite app does not yet allow subscription sharing, from time to time, it might be worth checking back in on the Subscription screen. When one of their subscriptions becomes available for Family Sharing, there are accounts of users receiving updates.