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I lived in Canada for several years, but now I live in Norway (again).

In Canada, I have purchased many apps on both the iOS and Mac OS X app stores. Some of these apps I have uninstalled over the years for different reasons.

I have now switched my Apple ID account country setting back to Norway, in order to get better app suggestions, etc. I have also changed my address and credit card.

The problem is that, now I can no longer see the apps that I purchased in Canada in my "Purchases" tab in the App Store, so I cannot re-download/reinstall any of them. When I go to one of these apps in the Norwegian App Store, it's as if I never purchased the app; I have to pay for it again if I want to download it. This goes for both iOS and OS X App Stores.

Does anyone know of a way to download the apps I purchased while my Apple ID account country setting was set to Canada, after having changed the country setting to Norway?

Note that I only have one Apple ID; I simply changed the country setting once to Canada when I moved there, and then back to Norway when I moved back.

Changing my settings back to Canada while living in Norway is not an option, since I no longer have a Canadian address or credit card and, even if I did, I would not want the hassle of switching the country setting back and forth all the time.

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What hassle?, you only have to do it one time to get your stuff ? –  user44516 Mar 21 '13 at 23:28
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I would have to change it back every time I want to download/re-install an app purchased while my account was set to Canada. I don't want to have them all installed (there are way too many). –  Leif Mar 22 '13 at 9:44
    
You can un istall (deactivate) app but leave a copy in the download folder. –  user44516 Mar 22 '13 at 10:22
    
I have a no-to-huge SSD drive, and I don't want to keep unnecessary files laying around. Another issue is that I have another MacBook at work, and I would like to install and manage apps that I have purchased in the App Store on both laptops. –  Leif Mar 22 '13 at 11:17

6 Answers 6

up vote 2 down vote accepted

You can not transfer your Canadian account purchases (credentials) to a new account in Norway.

You have to log in to your Canadian account to retrive your purchases. Your credi card is not relevant since you will not be purchasing new stuff.

You can create new (additional) account in Norway for new purchases.

I would not want the hassle of switching the country setting back and forth all the time.

If it is hassle for you switching the Store ID's than I have no solution for you.

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Thanks for the answer, Borderline. I'm not looking to transfer purchases to another account (I don't want two accounts to maintain). I just want to be able to re-download my purchases with the same account without switching countries back and forth, but I guess that's not possible then. –  Leif Mar 22 '13 at 14:18
    
I actually tried doing this today, but it wouldn't allow me to change the country, because I need a valid Canadian credit card to switch back (which I don't have anymore). You need a valid credit card for the country you are switching to, even if you don't make any purchases. –  Leif Mar 23 '13 at 18:04
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strange, I am connected to Apple Store without valid card ? –  user44516 Mar 23 '13 at 19:36
    
Yeah, it's a bit odd. I thought it would be possible, but it seems like it's not. When I enter my Norwegian credit card, I get an "Sorry, this credit card is not valid in Canada" message. Think I will try to call Apple support and ask then what to do about this and update this thread for other readers. –  Leif Mar 24 '13 at 17:46

I was pretty much in the same situation as you and got the same answers from iTunes support. Like you, I did not want to manage two Apple IDs. So finally I just switched countries.

Here is what I did:

  • I went to my purchased history before changing the stores and made a screenshot of everything I own (10 pages for iOS and two for OS X).
  • After switching countries, all the apps that I purchased are gone from the purchased list and if I search for an app that I previously bought, instead of getting the cloud icon I just get the price tag.
  • However if you click Buy it will ask you for your password, think for a few seconds and you will get a message, something like "you previously bought this app so now it's free" and you won't be charged.

As long as you know what you have purchased in the past, you can get in now for free.

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Oh! Really? I was not aware of this, and I'm surprised Apple support didn't tell me about it. I'll try it. –  Leif Oct 20 '13 at 14:06
    
but these newly downloaded apps are not automatically updated, are they? and to update them, do you manually go to the app's page and click update or do you have to delete the app and re-"Buy" it? –  lhunath Jan 10 at 15:34

In the same situation: Bought an app in a country and now I'm living in a different country where I have the same apple ID but the credit card details (and hence the iTunes store) are set for the country in which I reside now.

I've contacted Apple Support and they basically said that an app purchased in one country is not available in the cloud in another country. Pretty disappointing.

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Yes, this is the same answer I got as well. Support said that I basically need to switch country if I want to access apps I purchased previously, which is a pain after having lived in several countries and you don't remember which country you had chosen at the time you purchased a particular application. –  Leif Oct 4 '13 at 8:43

Another solution I've seen proposed is the following:

Create separate Apple IDs, one for each country whose store you have apps in. Eg.

  1. bob.us@icloud.com
  2. bob.ca@icloud.com

On your Mac, create separate user accounts, one for each of your Apple IDs. Eg.

  1. Bob US
  2. Bob CA

Make sure each account is set up with iCloud enabled on their respective Apple IDs. This should enable updates of your Mac apps.

Move your iTunes library to a common location on your computer, out of your home directory. Eg. /Users. Make sure that all of your user accounts have full access permissions to the moved iTunes library (eg. by doing Get Info on the library and setting its permissions to Read & Write for Everyone).

Log into each of your user accounts, start iTunes while holding Option (Alt). This will allow you to select an alternative location for your iTunes library. Find the library you just moved. Do this for each of your user accounts, linking them to the same iTunes library. Make sure each of your user accounts has iTunes started and logged into the store with its respective Apple ID.

For convenience, make sure "Fast user switching" is enabled in System Preferences, this will allow you to quickly switch between your accounts from the menu bar.

Now, to sync your apps, switch to each of your accounts and open iTunes. Finally, sync iTunes to your devices. Note however that you must close iTunes in each account before you switch to the next; you should only have one iTunes open on this shared library at a time.

It's still a bit cludgy, but updates do work and it's much better than logging in and out of all your Apple IDs all the time or switching Billing Address all the time (which often isn't even possible).

Here's to hoping Apple will at some point in the near future become marginally sensible and join the community of global thinkers.

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After numerous phone-calls and emails back and forth with Apple, there is no ideal solution to this problem. Their solution is to change your account's country (which means that you'll need to provide a different credit card, etc.), if you wish to re-download an application which was purchased while you account was set to a different country.

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Instead of trying to update the apps through your computer, try updating all of them directly on your iPhone/iPad. For me it worked and then I transferred those purchases to my PC as well.

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