An Apple ID is an account you need to access various Apple services. It is sort of a unique identification number for all Apple devices and services. It’s also required to log in to Apple devices, purchase apps, and access iCloud storage, among other things.

how to change apple id

Suppose you’ve recently changed your email address, and it also happens to be associated with your Apple ID. In that case, you must change your Apple ID to the new email address to avoid missing future account verification requests and other critical emails from Apple.

Apple has a pretty straightforward process for changing the Apple ID, and we’ll show you how to change your Apple ID email address below.

What’s the Difference between switching Apple ID and changing Apple ID?

Switching Apple ID means using a different account on your iPhone or Mac. This can be done in order to access different content, sync settings, or make purchases. It’s also used when selling your Apple device to another owner.

Changing Apple ID means using the same account but changing the email address and/or password. This can be done if you want to update your contact information, sign in with another device, or reset your password.

Switching Apple ID is rather simple and straightforward. This guide is about how to change Apple ID on iPhone/iPad/Mac or web.

What You Need to Know About Changing Apple ID?

Before you change your Apple ID to a new email address, here are a few points to remember:

  • If you’re trying to change your Apple ID email address to an @icloud.com one that you’ve created in the last 30 days, then try changing your Apple ID after 30 days.
  • When trying to change your Apple ID, if you see a message that tells you that the email address you’re trying to use isn’t available or is in use, make sure you or any of your family members aren’t already using it.
  • If you’re already using an Apple domain Apple ID—the ones with the @iCloud.com, @me.com, or @mac.com address—you can’t switch back to third-party email addresses.

Related: How to Remove Device from an Apple ID

How to Change Your Apple ID to a New Email Address

Follow these steps to change your existing Apple ID email address to a new one:

  1. Open Safari or any other web browser and visit the Apple ID account page.
    apple id account page
  2. Sign in with your Apple ID.
  3. Apple will alert you that your Apple ID is being used to sign in to a new device. Click Allow, and it will send a six-digit PIN to your trusted Apple device.
  4. Enter this PIN in the following prompt on the website to confirm your identity.
  5. With Sign-In and Security in the left-hand pane selected, click on Apple ID on the right.
    apple sign in and security page
  6. Enter the new email address you want to use for Apple ID in the New Apple ID box.
    adding new apple id
  7. Choose Change Apple ID.
    changing apple id
  8. Confirm your Apple ID password and hit Continue.
  9. Apple will send you a verification code on the new email address. Copy this code and paste it into the Enter verification code prompt on the website.
  10. Hit Continue, and your Apple ID email address will be updated.

Once you’ve changed your Apple ID, you’ll need to log in to all your Apple devices and services using your updated Apple ID to avoid running into sync issues.

Steps to Update Apple ID on iPhone and iPad

If you have an iPhone or an iPad, follow these steps to update your Apple ID on it:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on your name at the top of the screen.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on Sign Out.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password on the following prompt and hit Turn Off.
  5. Again, from the Settings page, click on the profile button at the top.
  6. Enter your Apple ID email address and password and hit Next.
  7. Apple will send you a prompt on your trusted device. Hit Allow, and you’ll get a 6-digit verification code.
  8. Enter this code on your iPhone/iPad verification prompt screen, followed by the device passcode.

Steps to Change Apple ID on Mac

To update your Apple ID on Mac:

  1. Open System Preferences.
  2. Click on Apple ID.
  3. Select Overview from the left and tap on Sign Out… Make sure to tap Keep a Copy to keep a copy of all your data.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password to turn off Find My Mac and hit Continue.
  5. Again, in the System Preferences screen, click on Sign In.
  6. Enter your Apple ID and password.
  7. If prompted for a verification code, enter the one you received on your trusted Apple device to complete the sign-in.

Related: Forgot Notes Password? Here’s How to Reset Notes Password on iPhone and iPad

Switching to a New Apple ID Email Address is Hassle-Free

Over the years, Apple has made it really easy to change your Apple ID email address. So, if you’ve got a new email address or lost access to an existing one, which also happens to be linked to your Apple ID, you can easily switch to the new email address and keep using Apple devices and services.

When you change your Apple ID email address, you don’t lose your contacts, purchases, and other account information, contrary to what some people believe. But it’s always a good practice to backup your device and its data, so you don’t lose your important data if something goes wrong.

FAQs About Changing Apple ID

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When you change your Apple ID to a new email address, the new email address now becomes your Apple ID. And subsequently, every time you need to log in to any of your Apple devices or services now, you'll need to use the new email address.

If you're unable to change your Apple ID, it could likely be because you're trying to change your existing (Apple domain) Apple ID to a non-Apple third-party email address, which isn't allowed by Apple.

To reiterate, Apple lets you change your Apple ID if it's from:

  • a third-party email service to another third-party email service
  • a third-party service to any of the Apple domain ones (@iCloud.com, @me.com, or @mac.com address)

If by "change the Apple ID" you mean changing the existing Apple ID (account) with another one, then yes, you can change the Apple ID on your iPhone. However, if what you mean is changing the email address associated with your Apple ID, then, no. For the latter, you need to visit the Apple ID account page and follow the steps listed in the guide above.

In order to change your Apple ID password on your iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or Apple Watch,

Tap Settings > [your name] > Password & Security > Change Password.

You would need to enter your current password or device passcode, then enter the new password of your choice and confirm the new password.

If you want to change your Apple ID password on your Mac,

Click on the Apple menu () > System Preferences > Apple ID > Password & Security > Change Password.

You will be asked to enter the password you used to unlock the Mac before the new password is set.

To change the Apple ID password on the web,

  • Sign in to appleid.apple.com
  • Click Password in the Sign-In and Security section
  • Enter the current password and your new password, and confirm the new password to change it.

First and foremost, you can go to appleid.apple.com and submit an account recovery request. Apple will, after a short wait period, send you an automated phone call or text with further recovery instructions. If you're using an Apple ID that's been disabled, you'll need to reset it before you can use it again. Lastly, if you've forgotten your email address, you can use the change email address link in the sign-in area to get help updating it.

You can change your Apple ID country or region by following these steps:

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open the Settings app
  2. Tap General
  3. Under Language & Region, select desired country from the list under Region
  4. Enter new info and tap the Save Changes button on the bottom right corner

If you are wondering if it will retain purchases made earlier on the new email ID or if you can merge two Apple IDs, then the answer is NO. Unfortunately, Apple doesn't allow you to merge two Apple IDs. Instead, you can set up family sharing to share the purchases made from two different Apple IDs.

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