The only problem with a syncing cloud account – whether it’s from iCloud or Dropbox or any other service – is that when you change, remove or edit accounts, there is this remote possibility of losing data in the process. If not losing, it might be about merging the data and then never getting back to a previous original state.

A lot many users have this problem with iCloud accounts when they have a couple of them across few of their iOS devices (and Macs). In this post, we’re not trying to answer just the question of changing your iCloud account but also what syncs, what merges and what happens when you retain some of the data so you can be cautious about what happens after the new iCloud account is added.

There is slight difference in process in iOS 7 and iOS 8. If, your device is running iOS 8 then here is how to delete An iCloud account from iPhone/iPad.

Change iCloud Account on iPhone iPad and iPodAs such, changing the iCloud account is pretty easy and straightforward. There are just two steps: you remove the old iCloud account from your device and then you login with the new one.

As simlpe as it sounds, occasionally, this whole process causes havoc. And it’s not about data loss actually: data is never lost from the cloud when you change iCloud accounts on your iPhone or iPad. All data is safely tucked inside iCloud.

The problem lies in data merge when you retain some data from the old iCloud account and then use another iCloud account, which results in merging of data. The subsequent sync leads to a confusion if you didn’t see that coming.

Here’s how to delete or change iCloud account on iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch:

  • Go to Settings
  • Tap on iCloud
  • Scroll to the bottom and tap on “Delete Account”
  • You will be shown a screen like this:

Delete iCloud Account on iPhone

  • If you wish to keep those data on your iPhone, tap on “Keep on My iPhone”
  • If not, tap on “Delete from My iPhone”. Note that this will only delete data from your iPhone and *not* the iCloud account.
  • Now, head back to Settings → iCloud and add a new iCloud account. You will be asked if you want to merge iCloud data for services that you have enabled (like Contacts, Calendars, Reminders etc.).
  • When you merge, remember that the old data that rests on your iPhone will now get synced to the new iCloud account that you added.

With that, you change the iCloud account on your iDevice. This will effectively stop notifications, photo syncs etc. which you have configured across other devices using the old iCloud account. So make sure you remember what goes where and what happens after you change the iCloud to avoid further confusion.

  • 67darrenlunny

    Thanks for great article. What if the email address linked to your icloud account is no longer active and, of course, you’ve forgotten your password?

    • Tommy

      My iCloud account was something like this, myname@sfsu.edu (San Francisco State University’s email). Later, my school changed the whole email server to @mail.sfsu.edu, so my new email had become myname@mail.sfsu.edu. I updated my new email on the web and on my new phone so it worked without problem. Later, I decided to give my old iPhone to my cousin, which still had the myname@sfsu.edu associated with it.

      Here come the real problem. I cannot do anything because I could not even retrieve my password. The web would send verification email to my old email address which was no longer exist. How could I do the verification? Apple always thinks they are the best, the smartest, but I don’t think so.

      • elias

        I have a similar problem – previous user was my colleague who did not delete his data from iPad. I cannot change or reset iPad because I do not know his password and we have no current contact with him. How should we proceed?

        • Arman Nawabi

          Same problem I have…plz help me..my iPad every moment ask enter Apple ID..what can i do?????

          • Kris Rosselott

            We just bought an iPhone locked yesterday, gf figured it was some email thing that she could log into. Seems like everyones getting screwed

      • http://instagram.com/channelspirits Josie Fillat

        did you ever get a real answer to this? @iGeeksBlog – can you, have you ever, answered this?

  • David Joseph

    Thank you of the simple explanation. Hi5

  • Kristi

    I am currently sharing an icloud account with my son and I just received a new phone and would like to use my own account but do not want to lose my pics, songs, contacts etc. will this work for that?

    • rosie

      I would like to know this too

  • $124566945

    What you’re not addressing here is probably more important while switching the iCloud accounts – iTunes purchases, apps , music etc. They aren’t transferable.

  • Susan

    I have an Hp computer. My husband has an ipad. When he takes pics on the ipad they transfer over to the computer. I am now getting a message saying the icloud is almost full. We don’t know how to fix this. Everything I am reading keeps referring to an iphone which we don’t have. I’ve tried to find a way to delete the icloud pics from the computer since they are also in my pictures, but can’t find a way to do that. Any help for me. Thanks for any help.

  • trap

    i switched from a iphone 4 to a 6 but everyting but my contacts did not come to my 6 and it automaticly started a new icloud storage on the same email how do i sign in my old one so i can merge i have already tried deleting one and signing back in with no result

  • Jeri Roy

    I am having the same issue as Arman Nawabi. My old email address has been deleted.

  • mia

    i have an iphone with icloud ID and i don’t know tha password. when i try
    to Delet id it asks for password. how to change id without password. i wana use my own icloud id

  • sal

    if i click “delete account” will it delete the whole account? like my sister and i use the same account but i want to use my own so if i delete it from my iphone will she be unable to use it or will it remain unchanged for her??

  • tal

    some help my iphone 5s keeps asking for icloud account after selecting country
    recently bought it on ebey help pliz

  • Bill

    I was good without an iCloud account but must have unknowingly requested iCloud. Now all my old mail is gone and I don’t seem to have the aol mail options such as sent mail. How can I get rid of this iCloud? Thanks Bill

  • prakash

    when wants to remove icould account its need icould password. so how can i remove this account.

  • Ashley

    For some reason, the delete account button doesn’t show up, it replaces it with a sign out button. What do I do?