Share your address book
Overcome Family Sharing’s lack of a way to share contact information
it will take
you will learn
How to share contacts using a secondary Apple ID.
An email account not already associated with an Apple ID.
Apple’s Family Sharing service lets you share a calendar, photos, media bought from its download stores and more with your immediate family, but it doesn’t enable you to maintain a shared address book.
Sharing your main Apple ID with your family isn’t advisable – it should only be used by you; you can, though, create a secondary Apple ID purely to share contact information with them.
Create your new, secondary Apple ID in the Internet Accounts pane in System Preferences by clicking the iCloud logo on the right. Click Create Apple ID and follow the instructions, either entering an email address from another provider or clicking the option to create a free iCloud address. Write down the details of this account carefully to give to others who will share it. Apple will then send an email to the address for you to verify it.
Your new account will be added to the list on the left of the Internet Accounts pane. Select it, which results in a warning that this isn’t your primary Apple ID – ignore this. In the list of items to be shared, enable Contacts and disable the other features.
To add this secondary account to other Macs, go to the same pane, click the iCloud logo, enter the account’s credentials, and again select only the Contacts item.
In iOS, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Add Account. Tap iCloud, then enter the secondary account’s details. At the last step, leave Contacts enabled and turn off the other features. Finally, tap Save to add the account to your device.
Do your share
In Contacts on a Mac, when the secondary account is selected in the Groups pane (pick View > Show Groups), any card you create is added to that account. Under General in the app’s preferences, you can set this account to be the default for new cards, if you want.
In iOS, you’ll need to override the default location (specified in Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars) to add a new contact to the shared account. In the Contacts app, tap Groups, then Hide All Contacts, tap the shared account to reveal it, then tap Done. Now when you add a contact, it’ll be added to the shared account.
If you can, avoid having duplicate entries in your two accounts. As you copy cards to the shared account, delete them from the other to avoid the confusion that might come from the wrong one being updated.
You can make a secondary Apple ID to share contacts with family