Set up iCloud
If you don’t have an iCloud account, it’s easy to sign up for one, either on your device, when updating to iOS 5 or through the Settings app, or on your computer if you’re running OS X 10.7.2. If you’re switching from MobileMe, you have to move and merge your account through the iCloud website before you can take advantage the service.
Do you have an Apple ID?
If you’ve ever purchased something from the iTunes Store, you’ll have signed up for an Apple ID (which is usually your primary email address). Even if you never used this account to sign up for MobileMe, you can convert it into an iCloud account.
If you’ve converted your old Apple ID, you need to toggle the Mail switch to On in the iCloud pane to get an email address for your account.
To do so from an iOS device, go to the Settings app and tap the iCloud menu. At the top of the screen, enter your Apple ID and password. After a moment of setup time, iCloud will prompt you to merge anything on your device with this newly created account; tap Merge to do so, or Don’t Merge if you don’t want to copy the information currently on your device. From there, just tap the toggles to customize your iCloud account the way you prefer. Note that if you convert an Apple ID into an iCloud account, you won’t have access to iCloud email by default—you’ll have to create a [email protected]
address first. To do so, toggle the Mail slider in the iCloud settings pane to On; a pop-up dialog box from the bottom of the screen will prompt you to create a username.
To activate iCloud on your computer, you need to be running OS X 10.7.2. (You can download it from Apple’s website or from Software Update on your computer.) You can set up iCloud online at icloud.com by simply logging in with your Apple ID; you can also set it up from your computer’s System Preferences application by clicking on the iCloud preference pane.
But what if I share my Apple ID?
If multiple people use your Apple ID (say, if you have one central account for your, your spouse’s, and your children’s purchases), you can still use this ID among you for purchases, but each person will have to create a separate iCloud account for syncing and backup.
For example, if you have an Apple ID (or MobileMe account) you use between you, your significant other, and your daughter for purchases, but they'd like to take advantage of iCloud's sync and storage features, you'll want to do the following: Have each family member sign up for an iCloud account for their backups, mail, etc; then, after setting up iCloud on their iOS devices, go to the Store preference pane within the Settings app, sign out of the iCloud account (which will populate there automatically after you sign up), then sign into the original Apple ID you use for purchases.
If the Apple ID your family uses for purchases is also your primary account for syncing (if it's a MobileMe account, for example), you personally can use it for iCloud; but your family members will need to create separate iCloud accounts so that they don't accidentally end up syncing with your information.
Using the same Apple ID for Store purchases and iCloud (recommended)
Using the same Apple ID for store purchases and iCloud is recommended for most users. To use the same ID, follow these steps:
iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:
When you first set up your iOS 5 device, enter the Apple ID you use for iTunes in the setup screens. It will be used for store purchases and iCloud.
If you skipped the setup process, enter your Apple ID in Settings > iCloud and Settings > Store.
Mac: Enter the same Apple ID in Apple () menu > System Preferences > iCloud and in
iTunes > iTunes Store.
PC: Enter the same Apple ID in Control Panel > Network and Internet > iCloud and in iTunes > iTunes Store.
Using one Apple ID for iCloud and a different Apple ID for Store Purchases
You can use different Apple IDs for iCloud and store purchases and still get all of the benefits of iCloud. Just follow these steps:
iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:
When you first set up your iOS 5 device, enter the Apple ID you want to use with iCloud. If you skipped the setup assistant, sign in to Settings > iCloud and enter the Apple ID you’d like to use with iCloud.
In Settings > Store, sign in with the Apple ID you want to use for store purchases (including iTunes in the Cloud and iTunes Match). You may need to sign out first to change the Apple ID.
Enter the Apple ID you want to use for iCloud in Apple () menu > System Preferences > iCloud.
Enter the Apple ID you want to use for store purchases (including iTunes in the Cloud and iTunes Match) in iTunes > iTunes Store