Blog Post

iOS 5 and iCloud: Your questions answered

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(s aapl). 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.

53 Responses to “iOS 5 and iCloud: Your questions answered”

  1. I upgraded my iPad2. When I sync it I no longer see anything happening on the iPad itself that suggests a sync is In progress. I am not syncing to iCloud but rather to my computer. Should this be the case? Thanks.

  2. Mike McCartney

    I organize my contacts in to groups in Outlook. I then only sync the ones I want on my iPhone 4. With iCloud, it syncs ALL my contacts/groups. How can I manually tell iCloud not to sync all the groups?

  3. I want to know printing in ios 5 as I am not able to do it in non air print printers whereas earlier I could do it through some apps . Also save 2pdf and other PDF making softwares are also not working

  4. I uploaded some pages documents to my cloud and now I cannot open them…. The files have a pages icon on them but I cannot download them to another computer???

  5. mail does not work on upgraded iPhone 4 and iPad 1. Keep getting error message that username and/or password wrong but Apple has verified the username/password when setting up the icloud account. Cannot receive or send mail from on iPhone or iPad. If use MacBook to log into, I can send email to another email account but cannot receive mail at

  6. Upgraded MacBook, iPhone 4 and iPad 1 to IOS5. mail does not work –cannot send or receive mail from iPhone or iPad using icloud mail — get error message wrong user name or wrong password. However, when I delete the account and set it up again the user name & password are verified. If I use Mac to go to I can send mail to another email address from but cannot receive mail at An internet search shows others that have upgraded are having the same problem.

  7. I hate the new iCloud feature. We have 2 iPhones in our house and lost so many contacts and items from our phones after applying this upgrade. I want to uninstall it or completely switch to android. I am so frustrated and of course, Apple has the worst support of any company I have contacted. iOS 5 is horrible. Wish I could rewind the past 7 nightmare hours and not do the update!

  8. After backing up my iPhone 4 on my computer an then doing the download for the update… It wiped all the apps from my phone and what I had backed up on my pc… When I try to download from the apps on my phone it continues to ask for my credit card, even for the free ones… When I try to register my phone now it tells me that my phone does not exist… I am completely aggrevated…. Help please!!!!

  9. Help! I’m sure I’m not the only person with this problem. I don’t have a computer I don’t need one, I have a iPhone, or so I thought! So can any tell me where to take it to have iOS 5 installed? I have called both Verizon and apple, Verizon said they didn’t have the software and apple said they wouldn’t back up my phone if they did it. So does any one know where I can take it and have it iOS 5 installed? Needing some HELP in San Diego.::::.. Thank’s

  10. Hani Obaid

    i have over 500 apps organized in folders on 4 pages. on both upgrading my iphone4 and ipad 1 to ios4 and also to ios5, as soon as the upgrade finished it started restoring my apps and folders randomly ( instead of folders first) since the apps werent being restored in their original folder, ios upgrade hits the 11 page limit and the majority of my apps end up invisible. the only workaround is to restore a preupgrade backup right after which brings back all folders with apps. Apple doesnt seem to consider this a bug as i did report the issue on ios4.

  11. Darrell,
    I have a problem an existing domain based email acccount on iphone 4 now that have upgraded to iOS5. With my phones att data account the phone would send emails via the 3G data (no server) selected as the primary smtp server. Now even with the No Sever selected on the phone it tries to send through the domain server, reports an error send mail and places emails in the outbox. This was formerly a seamless event that is now a reall problem. Suggestions?

  12. Daniel Gemeiner

    ios 5 downloadedd ok have all functions except the cloud. It says verify by the e mail sent , but no e mail sent. I have called apple 3 times with no answers provided. any suggestions from anyone

  13. Joi Friend

    I downloaded iOS 5 and did the update for both my 3GS iPhone and iPad, what happened to all of my music? i’m having a difficult time doing the iCloud sync to get that ack on there. Everything seems good so far

  14. Quick question. I’ve noticed that some songs and albums on my iPhone are not able to be selected, yet my phone says I have 4200 songs. I updated the music last night through iTunes. Yet, some albums don’t have artwork nor are they able to be selected. I’m just curious why this is?


  15. Tintorera

    After upgrading my iPhone 4 to iOS 5 I am unable to turn on location services. When I hit location services in the settings menu, the location services window/screen opens, but the text is grey, and I am not able to turn it on. Any suggestions? Also the iCloud and Twitter buttons in the settings menu is grey and none functional.

  16. iTunes / iCloud Question: If I utilize Apple’s music match feature in iCloud, will it correctly recognize all my renamed albums? Most of my music I ripped from CD. And most of my greatest hits albums were renamed to make them specific to artist and make the naming nomenclature consistent across the board. The result is that I no longer have umpteen “Greatest Hits” albums co-mingled.

  17. sfvisionary

    Everything went well with the IOS 5 update on my original iPad but I have found a very frustrating change in the latest IOS. None of my EuroSmartz printing apps are working anymore. When I emailed EuroSmartz excellent support Team I received the floowing official response:
    “Apple’s latest release of iOS 5 has changed the way apps are able to interact with the device. This now means that the one of the printing features in this app for printing from other apps via the AirPrint method is no longer available. Apple’s changes for iOS have removed this functionality for all apps – not just ours. All other printing options from other apps via this app are still available.

    iOS Apps are restricted by features of the OS and the device so there is no option to bypass the iOS restrictions. We are working with Apple resources to see if there is a way to restore this particular feature in future releases.”
    Why has Apple done this to such mission critical apps?!

  18. Read the Q&A and saw a couple interesting questions on missing folders/apps. I upgraded my 3GS and iPad 1 blind – no research beforehand. What I noticed in both cases is that after it has updated to iOS 5 do not unplug your device. It will then proceed to put back all your apps/songs/folders as it was before the update. An additional app screen might be added for the new Apple apps. Love the responsiveness of the update so far.

  19. 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?

    • 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.

  20. 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?


  21. Craig Dixon

    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?

  22. 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 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

  23. Jon Wallick

    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??

    • 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.

      • 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.

  24. Tunemannyc

    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.

  25. 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?

  26. Scubatankman

    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?

  27. 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?