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How can I update apps purchased under a different Apple ID?


iMore Question

Hey everyone!

I was using a different smartphone that I owned a few years ago and then my wife who was on at&t had a chance of upgrading from her iphone 4 to an iphone5. I took her iphone 4 and started using it. I know I should've started using a new apple id from the get go but i continued using hers as her phone was setup more or less the same way that I wanted it so I never made my own new apple id.

A few days ago I decided to change that old apple id of hers on my phone to a new one under my name and email add and I managed to do this through appleid.apple.com. It changed successfully and I got to keep all the apps that I had on my phone with my new apple id. A day later my wife who was using the old apple id got an error when she wanted to download an app saying that her appleid does not exist. We thought this must be a problem with the phone so we logged onto appleid.apple.com on our laptop and tried to sign in with her appleid and it said that this appleid does not exist. Now she cant update or download new apps with the appleid shes been using for so long and that only a few days ago was active on both phones.

Has changing her appleid to the new one that I now use deleted her id completely?

How can she own her old apps back to update them?

We thought that signing in with my now new apple id on her phone will fix things since its basically replaced only in name but that didn't work either as she got to sign in with my new info but the "can't update these apps as they were purchased under a different apple id" error still keeps popping up.

Any help would be appreciated, thank you. I apologize in advance if this seems written a little complicated but I tried my best to be as clear as possible. Will try to answer any questions and hopefully it will lead to a solution. Thank you


Ambassador Team Leader, Senior Moderator
Jan 8, 2012
Re: Had two phones using the same apple id. Changed the apple id on one phone and now cant update ap

You basically made her Apple ID your own when you changed it. What you should have done was export your email, contacts, calendars, etcetera, created a "new" Apple ID, logged in to your iPhone using your new Apple ID and passcode and then imported your data. You *may* be able to change the new Apple ID back to the way it was. As for the apps, are the billing information identical? If not, she will not be able to update her apps under the new Apple ID. Heck, you may have to call Apple to get it all sorted out.


New member
Jun 20, 2014
Thanks a lot for tour reply. Ill try doing that. If you find anymore info on this problem please update your answer too. Thanku