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5 freebies from Apple anyone can get

Apple’s new line of iPhones is releasing this week, along with updated iPads and a new Apple Watch later this fall. The release is preceded by the launch of updated operating systems across the line: iOS 15, iPadOS 15 and watchOS 8.

The new iPhone and iPad operating systems share many features, including Focus mode, Facetime updates including SharePlay and spatial audio, new Memoji, new notifications and more. Tap or click here for details on iOS 15.

Privacy is a big selling point of iOS 15, and iCloud+ is leading the way with new ways to protect your identity. The best part is Apple One bundle subscribers’ iCloud plans have been automatically upgraded to iCloud+ at no additional cost.

Check your email

Qualified Apple customers should have received an email about a free upgrade to iCloud+, which comes as part of an Apple One subscription. If you’re not a subscriber to this plan but still want iCloud+, you can subscribe to it individually.

iCloud+ provides more storage for photos, files and backups. You also get additional features focusing on safety and privacy. Check out what you get for free with iCloud+ below.

1. Hide my Email

Hide My Email generates unique email addresses that forward your inbox. This way, you don’t have to give your actual email address when signing up for a new account or filling out a web form. You can create as many addresses as you need and even reply to messages sent to the imposters.

  • To create a new email address, go to Settings and tap your Apple ID.
  • Go to iCloud > Hide My Email > + Create New Address.
  • Follow the onscreen instructions and you’ll get a new email address you can manage from iCloud settings.

Tap or click here to hear what Kim Komando thinks about iOS 15.

2. iCloud Private Relay (beta)

iCloud Private Relay encrypts your activity and lets you browse with Safari on different networks, no matter where you are. Websites, ISPs and even Apple won’t be able to see your IP address, location or browsing activity.

  • To activate iCloud Private Relay, go to Settings and tap your Apple ID.
  • Tap iCloud > Private Relay (Beta) and flip the toggle on.

3. Custom Email Domain

If you have a personal domain name, you can set up iCloud Mail to use it when sending or receiving mail. Now people will see your personal email address when you write to them. Once you set up your domain, you can add your existing email addresses or create new ones.

Your custom email addresses work with Mail, Messages, FaceTime, Calendar and can be used to sign in to your devices.

  • To set up a Custom Email Domain, sign into your account at icloud.com.
  • Go to Account Settings, then click Manage in the Custom Email Domain section.
  • Enter the domain name and hit Continue.
  • Follow the onscreen instructions to complete the setup.

4. HomeKit Secure Video

Use HomeKit Secure Video to record and view your home security footage on your device from anywhere. The footage is encrypted and can only be viewed by you and the people you give permission to. Recorded footage does not count towards your iCloud storage.

  • To set up HomeKit Secure Video, tap the Home app, then the house icon.
  • Tap Cameras & Doorbells and select the camera you want to set up notifications with.
  • Tap Notifications, then turn on Activity Notifications.
  • Choose what type of notifications you want to receive.

Tap or click here to check out some highlights of the new iPhone 13.

5. Family Sharing

Share your iCloud+ plan with up to five family members and all of you can access the same subscriptions to Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple News+, Apple Arcade, and Apple Card. Your group can also share iTunes, Apple Books and App Store purchases.

Each person can store photos, videos and files on one iCloud+ storage plan. Their stuff remains private, but you can view how much storage each person is using at any time.

  • To set up Family Sharing, go to Settings and tap your Apple ID.
  • Tap Family Sharing > Set Up Your Family.
  • Follow the onscreen instructions to set up your family and invite your family members.

How to upgrade to iCloud+

You can upgrade to iCloud+ right from your iPhone or iPad.

  • Go to Settings and tap your Apple ID.
  • Tap iCloud > Manage Storage or iCloud Storage.
  • Tap Buy more Storage or Change Storage Plan.
  • Choose a plan and follow the onscreen instructions.

A standard iCloud account is free and comes with 5GB of storage. iCloud+ adds more storage space, Private Relay, Hide My Email, HomeKit Secure Video and Family Sharing.

iCloud pricing is as follows: 50GB is $1 per month, 200GB is $3 per month and 2TB is $10 per month.

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