I have an Apple ID that is not an e-mail address(*). When you visit the “Create an Apple ID” page on the Apple ID site though, it says you need to “Enter your primary email address as your Apple ID.” I'm not sure how I got my existing Apple ID that is not an email address, from what I can tell from Apple's FAQ page it may have something to do with MobileMe (though I never had a paid MobileMe account; it could also be from using the Apple Developer Connection site).

Is it still possible to create a new Apple ID somehow and not use an e-mail address as the ID, or is this a legacy MobileMe option only?

(*) To clarify: the Apple ID is associated with an e-mail address of course, and that's where my receipts are sent to when I buy something in iTunes (let's say “john.doe@gmail.com”), but my Apple ID username that I use to sign in in iTunes or on the Apple ID page is not that e-mail address at all (let's say it's “cool_john”).


It a not possible to create a non-email address Apple ID any longer.

As a matter of fact, they are becoming more and more inconvenient, as various Apple services begin to assume that your Apple ID is an email. If you have not started to notice it yet, trust me, you will, soon.

I recently changed my non-email Apple ID to the linked email address. You can change the username of an Apple ID without starting a new account.

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    You're not kidding about it becoming more inconvenient. Unfortunately, I can't simply switch my non-email one to an email, as the email I use is my MobileMe, which already has an associated AppleID. – Gauzy Aug 7 '11 at 2:35
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    I had that problem as well... (email address already existed as an Apple ID). No way around that as far as I know. Luckily, I control my own domain, so I just invented a new email address. :-) There is NO WAY to delete an Apple ID account. – mmc Aug 7 '11 at 23:31
  • I do have my own domain as well, hadn't considered this option. Of bigger concern to me is the fact that my iTunes purchases are all on the non-MobileMe account, and thus not going to get any of the iCloud goodness. If only there were a way to merge accounts - but now we're a bit off the beaten path. – Gauzy Aug 7 '11 at 23:34
  • As much as I can say is that, other than 20GB of additional space available... I believe that your non-MobileMe account will get all of the iCloud goodness. – mmc Aug 8 '11 at 15:54

I have read that when iTools became .mac, users were grandfathered into .mac and that you could still use your username. I then read the same thing about when .mac became MobileMe. Is your account from back in the iTools days?

It's likely that Apple may have allowed usernames not based on email addresses at some point. However, ever since I switched to the Mac (2003) I have not seen this to be the case.

Hope this helps.


Where you got an Apple ID with no @:

Back in the early days of ADC, developer logins were required to be only alphanumeric. When Apple IDs were introduced, ADC IDs were converted to Apple IDs unchanged. Apple also strongly encouraged developers to request a "person merge" of any other Apple ID into this developer Apple ID.

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protected by bmike Mar 8 '17 at 11:36

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