Reinstating iCloud Storage, Goodbye Free MobileMe

Apple's free 20GB of iCloud storage for former MobileMe subscribers ended with September, which means anyone that procrastinated on signing up for a paid account woke up on October 1 to find that they had been downgraded to a free 5GB account. If you don't need the extra storage, no problem. But if you do, it's fairly easy to pay for the annual storage upgrade.

Here's how to buy extra storage for your iCloud account on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  • Tap Settings
  • Tap iCloud
  • Select your account
  • If you don't have a credit card linked to your iCloud account, tap Payment Information
  • If you have a credit card assigned to your iCloud account, choose Storage Plan
  • After selecting the Plan you want, tap Buy

Choose your account from iCloud's settings, and then pick the storage plan you wantChoose your account from iCloud's settings (left), and then pick your storage plan (right)

Since Apple gave MobileMe subscribers 20GB of free storage, for a total of 25GB, the choices you'll see are for the US$40 20GB plan, and the $100 50GB plan. If you don't need that much storage space, you can choose Downgrade Options and select the $20 10GB plan.

Here's how to buy extra iCloud storage from your Mac:

  • Choose Apple menu > System Preferences
  • Select iCloud
  • Click Manage
  • Click Change Storage Plan

You can choose your online storage plan from iCloud's preferences on your MacYou can choose your online storage plan from iCloud's preferences on your Mac

From here you can choose from the various storage options, just like on your iPhone or iPad.

For many people, the free 5GB Apple bundles with iCloud accounts is plenty, but for some of us it isn't quite enough, especially if you're backing up multiple iOS devices. I'm backing up two iPads and two iPhones to my account, plus I'm using iCloud syncing for many of my iWork files, so I need the 20GB upgrade plan. Yes, I'm probably the exception, but knowing I can bump up to 25GB of storage gives me the peace of mind knowing I can restore any of my devices from iCloud any time I want.