Thursday, I guest-hosted a live Q&A session at The Washington Post. The topic was upgrading to iOS 5, and also included questions about how iOS 5 and iCloud work, what features they offer, and how to transition to iCloud from other services.


Earlier today, I guest-hosted a live question and answer session at The Washington Post. The topic was whether or not to upgrade to iOS 5. Considering how much trouble Apple has had even keeping the update process working for users, it’s probably a question on a lot of minds right now.

I advise you to check out the full Q&A before making that decision, but basically you should keep in mind that if there’s no reason for you to upgrade urgently, waiting for major software updates to go through a bug-busting minor point update or two is always a good idea.

Questions posed at the Post event covered lots of ground beyond just the iOS 5 upgrade process; many wondered how iCloud and Apple IDs interact on the same device, and how certain features of iOS 5 and iCloud worked. Hopefully, our coverage over the past few days has answered many of your questions, but if not, the Washington Post Q&A is a good place to start.

If you have unanswered questions not addressed there, feel free to ask in the comments here. Hopefully, either myself, another TAB writer, or other readers can help resolve your problem or satisfy your curiosity, either with a simple reply or in a separate post.

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  1. I read through the Q & A and noticed an item that wasn’t addressed, and it’s unfortunately plaguing one of my co-workers. He has a very old Apple ID that wasn’t an email address–it was just a ‘username’ so to speak. Now that he’s performed the 10.7.2 update and iOS 5, he receives the message that he has an invalid Apple ID. Obviously he doesn’t want to lose any of his iTunes, or access to his Store Purchases over the years. What’s the solution for him?

    1. I’d advise your friend to contact Apple’s customer service staff, either via online chat or phone. Hopefully they can help him there, since this likely requires a technical change that can’t be initiated user-side.

      1. Thanks for the reply! Hopefully I’ll get good news from him soon, and I’ll be sure to post what I find out.

  2. Don’t know if you’re still taking questions but…
    With MobileME I was able to share my calendars and address book between my work computer and home computer. I do not want to share my home email, pictures, music, whatever between my work and home computers…just the calendar and address book. Does iCloud allow you to pick and choose what applications to sync?

    1. Yes, you can choose to sync or not sync each item individually. For more on that, check out this article:


      1. Excellent, thanks Darrell.

  3. I read through the Q&A’s and did not come across my issue. I use MobileMe and have 3 pop accounts being gathered into the mail app. I have not switched to iCloud yet because Apple states “Mail Accounts” are not available in iCloud. Am I correct in assuming “Mail Accounts” means iCloud does not support POP mail from other email services?

    1. Darrell Etherington Corey Thursday, October 13, 2011

      You can still use POP accounts with iOS 5’s Mail.app, and iCloud alongside those accounts, so your setup should still work. Let me know if you’re talking about something different.

      1. Sorry, I was not clear. I use the MobileMe web interface for the POP accounts, not the Mail app on my iPhone. Does the iCloud web mail app have POP account integration?

        1. Darrell Etherington Corey Thursday, October 13, 2011

          Oh, I see. Unfortunately Corey, you can’t use the new iCloud webmail to check external POP accounts. See here for more info:


  4. What happens with iCloud and macs that can’t take lion?

    1. Darrell Etherington Iain Thursday, October 13, 2011

      iCloud requires Lion to work on a Mac. You can still use iCloud on iOS devices if you don’t have a Lion-capable Mac, but you wont’ be able to sync data back to your Mac.

  5. I tried a mobile me trial last year, and as soon as I synced my iPad with outlook, I doubled my calendar and contacts. I want to sync everything in icloud. Is there a setting I should change before turning icloud on? I have a pc with outlook 2007, an iPhone 4 and an iPad. ThNks.

    1. Unfortunately I’m not that familiar with Outlook. Maybe someone else with more experience with it can help?

  6. I set up iCloud last night and when I was finished, I noticed that I had duplicate entries in ical and contacts. Any idea why this happened and how to correct it??

    1. I’ve had this happen, too. You can try wiping data from your device (so long as its backed up elsewhere — it should also be stored in iCloud) and re-activating iCloud. Duplicate entries resolved themselves and merged for me over time as far as I can tell. Otherwise, you might have to manually delete the duplicates. A pain, I know, but better than having to rebuild from scratch at least.

      1. Check iTunes settings on pc or Mac. If you have the sync for calendar or contacts turned on in iTunes Info tab and on ICloud you would duplicate. Turn those choices off in iTunes and in the Advaned section of the Info section Replace Content then resync.

  7. Multiple devices here’s my questions

    I want as few ids as possible. I want to share everything between two iPhones but have message separated per device (ni need for me to get imessages on a device other than the one it was sent to) and I want find my iPhone available for all devices on each device.

    One thing tho – I want my current me.com email only on one device.

    What are the correct steps in setting this up?

    Sorry for any spelling errors, the road is bumpy.

    Thank you

  8. When I have Location Services enabled for Reminders the little arrow at the top right is constantly active. I deleted all to dos from within the Reminders app but the arrow (GPS) is sill active …. Is this something I should expect? Should I get used to that always being there?

    1. Does force-quitting the Reminders app make it go away? This could be caused by another app who’s geo-location services aren’t updated to work with iOS 5 yet.

  9. This issue was raised twice in the Q&A, but I am looking for a bit of clarification. My wife and I have separate iPhones but share an AppleID. We want to continue to share store purchases, but we don’t have our data to merge using iCloud. In the Q&A, you recommended that people in that situation create unique AppleID’s to use with iCloud, and then use the shared AppleID for the store.

    The clarification that I am seeking is whether it is OK for one of us to use the existing AppleID for everything? In other words, I would use the existing AppleID for both the Store and iCloud, and then my wife would create a separate AppleID for use with iCloud on her device.

    Would that also work, or is there a downside to doing it that way?


    1. Darrell Etherington Brett Thursday, October 13, 2011

      Yes, that would work fine.

  10. I upgraded my iPod touch (3rd gen) to iOS 5 and discovered that it completely wiped it. Since I had cd purchases and other media there, it wasn’t on my laptop so now everything is gone. Even the album artwork is mismatched. Is there anyway to get my stuff back?

    1. Darrell Etherington Ajani Thursday, October 13, 2011

      If your purchases were made through iTunes, you should be able to find them in your Purchase history in the iTunes and App Store apps. If not, then unfortunately it could be lost, unless you have a backup on your computer from a previous iOS device sync.

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