Apple is one of those IT companies that makes some things very difficult for its customers. My guess is that this is in large part because it’s so very confident in its belief that it makes things easy for its customers. Most of the time things are indeed very easy. But if you get something wrong, sometimes it can be a pain to reverse it.
This problem arose with my wife’s iPhone. It was showing her outgoing messages labelled with my name as the sender. That wasn’t the case when she was using an iPhone 4, nor for many months when she moved up to an iPhone 6. But then, for no apparent reason, it started happening.
She uses gmail, so her own name was being properly applied to outgoing emails. Likewise, if she inspected her gmail from a browser, it looked fine. It was just the iPhone which was showing my name in its various lists as the sender.
Time for the tech hero – which is a role I sometimes pretend to at home – to fix it. First step as always: Google. It came up with what had to be the correct answer since it matched the symptoms so precisely: on the iPhone go Settings, Mail, Gmail, Account and fix the name there.
Except that the name there was already right.
That meant it was likely an Apple problem. So I went flicking through various settings on the iPhone to see if anything seemed amiss, and I came to the iCloud settings. And found two odd things. First, iCloud was switched on, which it should not have been because she’s generally suspicious of the cloud. Second, the iCloud ID was her email address and my name.
Ah, the penny dropped. In general your iCloud ID is also your iTunes account ID. One Christmas some time before she started using an iPhone, I gave her an iPod Nano. I set up iTunes on her computer and used my name. That was probably so that the name matched the credit card linked to the account. Possibly I used my email address too, and subsequently changed it to hers. The mists of my memory hide much of that.