If you find yourself searching the internet for “how to delete iCloud account,” then read on. Mobile devices are everywhere. Whether at the airport, soccer field, or local coffeehouse, we have become a culture of smart devices. They seem indispensable, allowing us to navigate in a new city or order food on the run. Behind Apple’s productivity and mobility is a technology called iCloud. When multiple devices make things cumbersome or become outdated, it might be time to figure out the answer to your “how to delete iCloud account” question.
Cloud technology has become a natural part of how we work, play, and relate to one another. It’s slick to pick up where you left off on a school project or have your calendar entries magically appear on your tablet or phone. Being on the run means relying on this technology to work as we expect it to, but when it’s not doing what we want or the device needs to change, we may suddenly find ourselves in a situation where we really need to understand the nuts and bolts of iCloud to find workarounds.
What Is iCloud?
In the early part of the 21st century, desktop computers and mobile phones were two distinct entities. Apple rolled out MobileMe in 2000 to address the need to access the information we routinely create on Apple’s Macs while away from the computer. MobileMe preceded the first generation of Apple’s mobile phones by 7 years. In that short time, consumers’ expectations rose quickly, and as Apple was designing iCloud, everyone from soccer moms to Wall Street investors were about to experience the indispensability of “mobile computing.”
In 2011, MobileMe (and iTools) became a thing of the past when Apple announced “the cloud” – iCloud, that is, for their loyal customers and soon-to-be converts alike. Customers who were subscribers of the previous technology could keep their mac.com or me.com email addresses. New customers would see icloud.com attached to their new iCloud email account they created with their Apple ID.
If you’re brand new to technology, there’s no actual cloud. All data (files, photos, music, reminders, and so on) are stored on a very large remote or virtual drive accessible via Wi-Fi. Remember the heydays when computer experts constantly urged us, “always back up your files,” ad nauseam? Some of us either felt invincible or fell prey to procrastination on that term paper and learned the hard way. With iCloud, most of that suffering is now obsolete.
Storage and Syncing
If you own at least one Apple device, whether you have a Windows PC or Mac on your desktop, you can use iCloud and its convenient features in three ways: storage, syncing. and cloud computing. This grants you access to Apple’s now-free applications like Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.
If you’re new to Apple technology, iCloud is easy and straight-forward to set up and begin. Create an Apple ID on your brand new iPhone or iPad during initial set up, navigate to the App Store, and create one there. Or, from your Mac or Windows PC, use iTunes to create an Apple ID and password. For more information, visit here.
When iCloud was launched, most tech-savvy users thought the 5GB of free data storage to be generous for the average consumer. Nowadays, 5GB is actually tiny, depending on usage, devices, and whether family members are using the same account. Many experts now highly recommend a separate iCloud account for each person. Sharing can create a predicament that might require finding out how to delete iCloud accounts in the future, so if you’re just starting out, it’s best to play it safe and have one account per individual.
iCloud will not only save all the data you choose (in Settings on iCloud.com), but important information from native Apple apps is synchronized across all of your devices. This means your desktop Mac, Windows PC, iPhone, iPad, and iPod can access your Calendar, Notes, Reminders, Photos, Mail, Music, Contacts, and iBooks. Even some third-party app developers also make it possible to sync your information.
Mobile computing is a reality with iCloud. Apple’s highly awarded word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software is now available on iCloud, and therefore, on the go. For more information on iCloud, visit: https://www.apple.com/icloud
With more technology, society sometimes moves at a blindingly fast pace – that’s when car keys and phones get left behind or lost. Find My Phone was a feature initially offered to MobileMe subscribers just a year before iCloud came out. When the iPhone 5 series appeared with iOS 4.2, customers could use this feature to find their devices by logging into their iCloud account.
Invariably, with so much data being shifted around in the cloud and growing concerns for security and privacy, keeping your information safe might eventually require the knowledge of how to delete an iCloud account. There are several avenues to explore further down.
Managing Your Data Storage
When iCloud was launched, consumers were first impressed by the ability to store their information virtually. Apple’s free 5GB seemed just the right amount for the occasional user, but if you take advantage of all the perks that come with iCloud, 5GB may become too small. The best option from a timesaving viewpoint is to purchase more storage. There are two considerations about data storage: the capability of the device itself and the space available on iCloud.
Apple devices store your files on the phone or tablet itself besides iCloud. The things that take up a lot of storage space are photos, videos, and music. If you’re retired, for example, and travel frequently, it might be an important thing to keep all of your photos and videos to share with your loved ones later. Device storage space might not match your storage on iCloud.
If time-consuming tasks aren’t intimidating for you, the route to consider is to delete the files you no longer want in iCloud. It is advisable to save the originals on a hard drive beforehand. Sifting through which files to delete can be complicated. See our recommendation for third-party apps (below) for some options. For information on Apple’s iCloud data storage pricing plans, visit: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201238
How to Delete iCloud Account
Whether you’re an occasional user, a mobile-productivity newbie, or an avid, career-minded iCloud user, there may be a day when “how to delete iCloud account” becomes important to know. The bottom line, really, is there is no way to completely erase your digital footprint, but you can permanently disable your iCloud account that is associated with your Apple ID. How to delete your iCloud account comes in two forms: with minimal security concerns and with great concern for privacy.
If, for example, you’re handing down your device to a family member or friend, then disabling the account and deleting your login credentials and data followed by a factory reset should be sufficient. Apple’s reputation for usability shines here. Here’s how:
On Your iPhone or iPad
- First, back up your data with iTunes using a USB cable
- Go to Settings on your device
- Navigate to Accounts
- Select iCloud
- Choose either Delete or Sign Out (depending on the iOS you’re running)
- Follow the prompts asking you if you are sure
- (Suggested: perform a factory reset on the device)
Disabling iCloud on your device also removes all the data that appeared on your iPhone or iPad. Now you can hand off your device to your delighted child, spouse, or friend, or you can sign onto that device with a different iCloud account.
Disabling Your iCloud Account
If you want to disable your account completely, you will need to remove all the devices associated with it.
- Log in to your account at iCloud.com
- Go to Settings
- Choose the device(s) you want to remove from your account
- Scroll down and disable Find My Phone and/or Find My Mac
- Follow the prompts to enter your Apple ID and password
If you will no longer be using that iCloud account, you will need to disable iCloud on every device you own, including your Mac or Windows PC. On Mac, go to System Preferences: Accounts. On Windows PC, perform an uninstall with the Uninstall application in the Control Panel.
Much of modern computing occurs behind the scenes, leaving traces of our information – like web browsing and passwords – susceptible to hackers. If you’re selling your device to someone you do not know, you will do well to consider one of these third-party apps. Even if you know the person, these apps can perform these functions accurately and comprehensively, saving you precious time. Further, your data is saved for you to organize at a later date, and “how to delete iCloud account” is part of these apps’ main functions.
iMyFone’s LockWiper can save you the hassle of the various steps described above by remembering passwords and keeping track of which iOS you’re running on which device. It is free to try. The new owner can confidently feel that there will be no interference from the previous account. Visit here.
iMyFone’s iPhone Data Eraser is the way to go if you want to remove all traces of your data history completely with the assurance of award-winning designers. When you back up your phone to iCloud or iTunes, it also stores some hidden information, like Safari’s browsing history and bookmarks and information stored by some third-party apps you have on your phone. iPhone Data Eraser is also free to try out. We liked how the designers paid attention to detail, especially the optimizer and precautionary functions. Visit here.
The convenience of cloud computing shouldn’t be a headache. Though it’s difficult to predict exactly where this technology will take us in the next decade, we’ve looked at all the angles when figuring out the answer to the “how to delete iCloud account” question. For long-time Apple customers, many of the steps might be intuitive. For newer users to this kind of technology, the steps might seem daunting, and the extra help is most welcome.
The bottom line is if you are handing down your iPhone to your child or spouse, learning “how to delete iCloud account” is relatively easy. If your device is going to someone you don’t know, you will want to take some serious precautions. In either case, iMyFone’s LockWiper or iPhone Data Eraser will make the task easier and remove any hesitation or worry.
Featured photo via Flickr