Functioning and main problem of shopping
Among those benefits of setting up an Apple Family, stands out the fact of being able to share app purchases on iPhone or on any other device. That is, if you have activated the corresponding option to share in the family settings, every time you buy a payment application in the App Store, the rest of the members will be able to download it at no cost. As if they are the ones who buy them. And this has applied for a few months also to apps that work by subscription.
We are not going to deny that this functionality is very good and in fact it is in itself more than enough reason to dare to create a family. However it works in a way very unintuitive. If one of the members proceeds to download a paid app, which due to the family settings should be free, when they see the application’s file in the App Store, the price continues to appear. In fact, you will have to click on buy and even complete the payment process with Face ID / Touch ID before a pop-up window appears informing you that this app is free because another member bought it.
Obviously this is extremely confusing, since in the end whoever downloads a paid app will not know if they will have to pay for it or not until the end. And yes, it is true that that person can ask the rest of the members if they have the app purchased to find out and even enter the section of their purchases in the App Store if they have them shared. However, they turn out to be more tedious methods and that would be solved in a better way with some kind of direct indication in the app’s file, showing from the beginning that there is already a family member who has previously paid for it.
It is not the only problem with Apple’s “In Family”
Without having to deviate from the shopping issue, we find another operation at least strange in the familiar configuration of Apple. In this case it is the paid apps that have not been previously purchased by any other member. In that case you have to pay its full cost, something totally logical and normal. However, the problem comes with the card through which that payment is made.
The most comfortable thing would be that each member of the family can have their assigned payment method to make their purchases in the App Store, iTunes and others. In fact, this is how it works on paper, although in practice who is charged is the family administrator. And this can be a real headache in some cases, since if the administrator is not the one who is making the purchase, you will see that on many occasions, somewhat confusing charges come to the card.
What is done in practice in most cases is that the person making the purchase communicates with the administrator to notify him and make the corresponding payment. Although obviously this is still not the most comfortable and more when in theory each member can configure their own payment method. Therefore, adding this handicap to the previous one, we find that Apple’s configuration has a lot to improve because, we insist, the idea is perfect despite the fact that the execution leaves something to be desired.