I'm not an active user of Apple devices, and researching this for a project. I'm trying to have a group of MP3 players for shared use with a shared library. I wouldn't care if it costed more, but I'd really want the music to be shared. But, I am sure that paying double for double the device sharing isn't a feature. Note these devices will not have wireless (probably going to use like iPod shuffles or something with no Camera/Wi-Fi/Bluetooth, due to the project requirements.

From what I understand, no more than 10 devices where maximum of 5 can be Macs can be associated with an Apple ID. However, I am aware of Family Sharing feature. I'm not sure though if it's possible to have 10 devices associated with one Apple ID, share that iTunes library with another Apple ID and have another 10 devices, and so forth.

If this isn't possible, suggestions on how to get the largest shared music library on multiple devices, while maintaining an easy and automatic way to sync all music? I don't want the manager of these devices to have to drag and drop MP3 files on all devices. I'd prefer plug-n-sync functionality.

  • I'm not sure if the 10-device limit applies to iPod Shuffles (iPods Shuffle?) or only to iOS devices. Do these 'MP3 players' need to be Apple devices or could they be any portable music player - in which case you could choose any type that mounts as a drive on your computer and use any file sync program to sync the files to it? Do they all need to sync to the same computer? Does the music library consist of commercial tracks, or your own sound files?
    – nekomatic
    Apr 29 '19 at 14:00
  • Also since the iPod Shuffle was discontinued in 2017, there's no current Apple product without camera, WiFi or Bluetooth hardware. You could disable all of those features via Restrictions in iOS though.
    – nekomatic
    Apr 29 '19 at 14:13

More than 10 Apple devices can not be associated to a single Apple ID.

A single Apple ID can be used to log into upto a maximum of 10 Apple devices where no more than 5 of them can be macOS devices.

A Family sharing group can consist of upto 5 members (apart from the organizer). Each of the 5 members setup their devices using their own Apple ID.

The original limit of being able to use an Apple ID on upto a maximum of 10 Apple devices apply to each family member.

  • So can you have a Family Sharing plan with 5 Apple IDs with 10 devices each, totalling 50 total devices with a shared iTunes library or is it 10 devices across ALL associated Apple IDs?
    – Greg
    Apr 29 '19 at 12:54
  • 1
    @Greg No. Some clarity is required here. An Apple ID can be a part of only one Family at a time. You can have one organizer who logs into 10 devices. Then the organizer creates a Family with 5 members, where each of the 5 members have 10 devices each. Total: 10 + 5*10 = 60 devices.
    – Nimesh Neema
    Apr 29 '19 at 13:03
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    Family Sharing works for content you purchase from the iTunes Store, but not for music you add to iTunes manually (the question refers to 'MP3 files'). iTunes Match only shares to the other devices associated with the same AppleID.
    – nekomatic
    Apr 29 '19 at 14:04

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