If you purchase an Apple device whether a computer, iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch, you will be confronted with setting up an Apple ID which is how Apple connects your device services to iTunes or the App store, to warranty issues, or as Apple describes:
“An Apple ID is the personal account you use to access Apple services like the App Store, iTunes Store, iCloud, iMessage, the Apple Online Store, FaceTime, and more. It includes the email address and password you use to sign in, as well as all the contact, payment, and security details that you’ll use across Apple services.”
If you use a different Apple ID for each device, this might be confusing to keep them separate. As Apple warns, “As a reminder, you only need one Apple ID. Using multiple Apple IDs might be confusing when you access purchased content or use Apple services.”
The concept Apple has is to connect your Apple ID with all your Apple devices you own. The limit set for now is 10 devices. This may not be enough depending on how many Apple devices you own so there is talk of increasing this limit, but for now ten usually will suffice. Why should you use just one Apple ID for all your devices? As Apple explains:
“To ensure that all your Apple services and devices work together seamlessly and you can access your personal content from all your devices.”
Do you want your Contacts to sync with all your devices (as well as Calendar) and Music purchases? Do you want to back up content with your device using iCloud? Use one Apple ID.
Creating an Apple ID
It is fairly simple to create an Apple ID.
Viewing the List of Devices
MacWorld has an excellent article by Jason Snell explaining how you can view all the devices listed with your Apple ID. Apple also has articles on the subject using iTunes or on the web logging into your Apple ID.
If you see a device that you no longer use in the list and did not deauthorize the device when you quit using it, follow these directions. Remember to deauthorize a device before selling it or giving it away.
Security and your Apple ID
Apple suggests you use a strong password and set up two factor authentication (also setting up two-step verification) with your Apple ID which helps secure your device and prevents access to any services associated with your Apple ID.
If You Forgot Your Apple ID or Password
Apple has a page dedicated to this subject regarding forgetting your Apple ID. However, the first place to look is iforgot.apple.com.
If you forgot your password, follow these steps.
Apple devices are extremely limited without setting up an Apple ID. Just having the above knowledge should help you get the most of all the services Apple offers through your Apple ID. For more info read Everything You Wanted to Know About Apple ID but Were Too Afraid to Ask by Johnny Winter.