Family Sharing makes it possible for a family (or group) up to six to share quite a bit, including apps and Apple’s services. And now it supports subscriptions, too.
Update (12/04/2020): Apple has updated its official developer portal to reflect these changes. The company confirms that both eligible in-app purchases and app/service subscriptions can now be shared via Family Sharing. Per Apple’s developer update today:
You can now enable Family Sharing for auto-renewable subscriptions and non-consumable in-app purchases, allowing users to share their purchases with up to five family members. Family Sharing provides a streamlined, convenient user experience and can help you attract subscribers, encourage paid subscriptions, increase user engagement, and improve retention. Sales and Trends reports will be updated soon to help you understand the performance of family subscriptions.
The original article continues below.
Apple turned the green light on the feature just recently (via MacRumors), and, based on our own devices, it looks like it’s switched on automatically. “Share New Subscriptions” is right at the top of the subscriptions page within the App Store, and says “eligible subscriptions” will be shared within the family automatically.
The feature is available now in the public release of iOS 14.2. Apple initially announced it alongside the public unveiling of iOS 14 and macOS 11 Big Sur earlier this year. With this feature, developers that offer subscriptions within their app(s) will be able to choose if that sub can be shared with Family Sharing or not.
Ryan Jones noticed the new feature addition earlier today and posted the findings on Twitter.
Family Sharing for Subscriptions just went live. pic.twitter.com/QxPDiztNWw
— Ryan Jones (@rjonesy) December 3, 2020
Jones notes that none of the other members within his Family Sharing group were notified of the change. What’s more, the new subscriptions aren’t showing up for the other family members, either. Jones suggests that it may be tied to Restore Purchase, which means every member of the family will need to be notified when they are getting a subscription shared (if necessary).
This is a nice change on Apple’s part, at least building in the support. However, it’s still up to the developers if they want to offer the option.