Changing Apple ID: Pros and Cons?

Here’s everything about the pros and cons of changing your Apple ID:

Changing your Apple ID can help you improve your digital security, regain control of your account, and simplify how you manage it all.

On the downside, it can complicate how you keep track of everything, and you’ll have to sign back into every app and account that is tied to your Apple ID.

So if you want to learn all about changing your Apple ID and its pros and cons, then this article is for you.

Let’s jump right into it!

Changing Apple ID: Pros and Cons? (Everything to Know)

What Does It Mean to Change Your Apple ID?

Before I can take you through the pros and cons of changing your Apple ID, it’s prudent to explain what that really means.

For the most part, there are two possibilities, and I’m going to cover both in full detail today.

One thing this can mean is changing the primary email address of your Apple ID.

Whenever you sign in to an Apple service, it asks for your Apple ID and your password.

The “ID” you use is the email address you used to create the account.

As it turns out, you can change this email address without making a new Apple ID.

When you do, you change the email address associated with the Apple ID.

So, purchases will be confirmed with that new address. You’ll use the new address to sign in to Apple services.

Management, in general, will run through the new email.

But, the ID itself won’t change. You won’t lose your purchases. You won’t lose iCloud data. It’s all still the same account overall.

The other option is that you can change the Apple ID itself.

In this case, you aren’t just changing the associated email address. You’re creating an entirely different Apple ID.

It can’t sync with your old iCloud data, and it won’t have anything you purchased via the other ID. 

To distinguish between these concepts, I’ll use a convention.

If you’re changing the email but not the overall ID, then that will be called “changing your Apple ID.”

If you go the more thorough route, I’ll call it “creating a new Apple ID.”

What Are the Pros of Changing Your Apple ID? (2 Benefits)

With that covered, let’s dive right in.

There are reasons to change your Apple ID without creating a new account.

For the most part, it comes down to that email address. If you don’t want to (or can’t) use your original email for the ID, then changing it makes a lot of sense.

For a lot of Apple services, you need to be able to access the ID on file, especially if you ever want to update or change the password.

So, the first pro of changing your Apple ID is that it allows you to fix problems tied to the old email address.

Updating the email keeps things working, and that’s nice. But, there are a couple of other pros that are also worth considering.

#1 Improving Security

Regardless of why, when you change your Apple ID email address, Apple is going to walk you through a security update.

You’re going to have to confirm the new email address, and you’re going to get a chance to update your password too.

On top of that, Apple is going to suggest that you institute two-step authentication.

This is a security feature that makes it a lot harder for someone to hack or steal your Apple ID, and it’s why Apple is pretty insistent on using this measure.

Ultimately, changing the email is going to push you into updating and improving your security setup in general, and that’s good for your online safety.

#2 Gaining Control

The other major con of changing your email address is that it improves your ability to control your Apple account.

It’s possible to limp along with your Apple ID even when you can’t access the original email used to create the account, but that’s not a good place to be.

If you’re able to change the email address, then you can gain full control over the account again.

It makes it easier to manage everything tied to the account, including iCloud, purchases, messages, and more.

What Are the Cons of Changing Your Apple ID? (3 Risks)

There are definitely good reasons to change your Apple ID, but the process can come with inconveniences too.

These are some of the most prominent among those inconveniences, and you’ll want to think about them before you commit to changing your email address.

#1 Email Confusion

You’re changing the email address that you use to sign in and manage the account.

Such a change usually takes time and energy.

On top of that, many people have multiple emails that they use on a regular basis.

Any time you change your Apple ID email, you’re making your own life more complicated.

It’s not the most overwhelming of obstacles, but it’s why most people don’t change their Apple ID unless they have a good reason behind it.

Otherwise, you’re making your life a little more difficult for no real reason.

#2 Spam

Spam is another real problem.

Typically, Apple won’t sell your email address to spammers, but that’s not really the whole story.

You can use your Apple ID to sign into third-party accounts and services.

When you do, you’re giving them your email address, and some of them might sell your email address to spammers.

You’re giving up a new email address to the spam.

Even if that isn’t the case, the new Apple ID email is going to receive every notification from Apple and any third-party sign-in that is attached to your Apple ID.

Make sure you use an email address that you don’t mind getting spammed.

#3 Signing In

There’s an additional nuisance that comes with changing your Apple ID.

When you do it, you have to sign back into everything that uses your Apple ID.

You might be underestimating what this really means.

You have to sign back into Apple services on every single device that uses them.

Then, you have to sign back into every app that is managed by your Apple ID. The same goes for every website tied to your Apple ID.

For any user, this can end up being an ongoing process that takes a long time to resolve.

It’s doable, but you’ll be randomly signing into stuff you long forgot about for probably a few months.

What Are the Pros of Creating a New Apple ID? (2 Benefits)

Sometimes, changing the email address isn’t possible or practical.

You might need to create a whole new Apple ID instead. You can create an additional ID that doesn’t replace the original.

Or, you might need to replace the original account with a new one.

That sounds like a big deal because it is. You’ll want to go through the cons of doing this before you get to it.

But, there are pros too, and we should start there.

#1 Security

All of the security benefits of changing your Apple ID apply to creating a new account. That much is obvious.

But there’s an additional thing to consider.

Sometimes, our accounts get compromised, and sometimes, it’s bad enough that recovering the account feels insurmountable.

If that happens to your Apple ID, then it might reach the point where it’s easier to scrap the old ID and just make a new one.

If you do, then none of the information stolen from the old account will help someone break into your new account, provided you use a new email address, password, and security questions.

#2 Functionality

One of the primary reasons people ever create a new Apple ID is that they lose access to the old email address.

When that happens, it can be difficult to maintain control of your Apple ID.

In a worst-case scenario, you won’t be able to access the old ID at all anymore.

The only way forward is to create a brand new Apple ID.

It comes with all of the cons listed in the next sections, but for that price, you get control back.

You can use Apple services because you have a functioning Apple ID once more.

What Are the Cons of Creating a New Apple ID? (2 Risks)

If there were no downsides, people would create new Apple IDs all the time.

You wouldn’t be here reading all of this because you could just try it for yourself and learn firsthand.

Unfortunately, there are downsides, and they’re pretty steep.

Before you go off and try to create a whole new Apple ID to solve your problems, you’ll want to understand the true cost of this action.

#1 Losing Everything

This is really it. Creating a new Apple ID to replace your old one is the last resort for this one reason.

You can’t transfer anything from one ID to another.

If you only change the email address, you aren’t creating a new account, and you get to keep all of your stuff.

When you create a new ID, it won’t have any of your purchases or data.

It’s a blank slate, and Apple is not known to make exceptions on this. The data from the old account will not be transferred.

That’s the price of a new ID.

#2 Signing in and Spam

Even though you’ve already paid a high price for creating a new ID, the cons aren’t quite finished.

You have to use a new email address to create a new Apple account.

That means that all of the cons attached to changing your Apple ID also apply to creating a new Apple ID.

You have to manually sign in to all of the things all over again.

And, your new email address will still be at a higher risk of receiving spam.


  • Theresa McDonough

    Tech entrepreneur and founder of Tech Medic, who has become a prominent advocate for the Right to Repair movement. She has testified before the US Federal Trade Commission and been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, helping influence change within the tech industry.