The Apple ID device limit for iTunes Match isn’t 5. It’s 10!

By | 2013-09-26

Most people aren’t aware, but there is a limit to the number of Apple devices you can associate with a single Apple ID. This wasn’t a problem for me until I found out about synching all of my music into the internet cloud with iTunes Match. Keep in mind that I have over 6000 songs, a small library by some aficionado standards, but it fills well over 60 GB of storage.

Rather than maxing out my spend to get an iPhone or iPad that has enough storage for all of my music and enough left over for my 220+ apps and data, I opted to use iCloud for what it’s really good at – storage and immediate retrieval. I do download the songs and playlists I listen to regularly but I have to admit that having access to all of my music at any time is quite the happy thing for a music lover of random tastes – such as myself.

But I digress. Until a few minutes ago, I thought there was a 5 device limit. That worked fine for the 3 Macs, an iPhone and an iPad in the household. Unfortunately for my daughter, her school laptop, a Macbook Pro was device #6. I never tried to add it to the iTunes Match list for my Apple ID because of the 5 device limit. So, she couldn’t access all of our family music without synching individual songs and playlists manually. She should be very happy since she shares my music tastes. Note: Her Mac was FREE – thanks to our progressive education system. Well, I pay $50 a year for the all-inclusive insurance.

My point is this. I just added another iPhone and an iPad for work. Both accepted my Apple ID for iTunes Match so I Googled ‘iTunes Match Apple ID limit’ for details. Low and behold, the limit is 10! I don’t know when it changed and I don’t care. All I know is I’m a happy camper! If you really know me, you know I’m smiling. Big time…

According to the Apple Support article, “iTunes Store: Associating a device or computer to your Apple ID”:

Once a device or computer is associated with your Apple ID, you cannot associate that device or computer with another Apple ID for 90 days.

Adding a device to your Apple ID triggers a 90 day timer against that device with respect to iTunes Match access. The timer must complete 90 days from the day the device was associated before it can be reassociated to another Apple ID. I have personally experienced this when switching one of my Macs to another Apple ID for what I thought was a brief time. That turned into a long 90 day wait. Fortunately there is a count down in your iTunes Store account. Not a huge problem, but something to consider for particular scenarios – like devices being shared on a temporary basis.

It should also be noted that Apple TV also uses one of your designated 10 devices. That means I have just enough room for another Mac, iPhone and one Apple TV. I can probably address that last one with Home Share later. We’ll see.

By the way, iTunes Radio is ad-free if you have an iTunes Match subscription. I do believe that was the sound of my door to Pandora closing.

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