Thanks to Rob Isaac, who sent 6 eager new iPad owners instructions the other day, here’s how to open a US iTunes account.
You can have multiple iTunes accounts, and one of them can (should) be a USA account. If you use the USA account then you will see a lot more content, and you will see content often well before you see it in other countries. If you have an iPad then many critical applications are only available on the USA store and if you have an Apple TV then the movies available will expand dramatically, and if you want to buy books – well then that’s only possible on the US account as well.
First create an iTunes account without a credit card. Apple tells you how, but basically sign out of iTunes, change the country using the link at the bottom of the page and then buy a free app. You’ll get prompted to sign in, and can instead create an account, choosing payment method of “none” along the way. Rob says to use the address of a large hotel in the city of your choice – and don’t use a famous address like 1600 Pennsylvania in DC. He also says “Follow their guide *exactly*. If you get asked for a US credit card, you missed a step.”
Now you have an account you can buy free applications – try it.
Next you need to apply some US credit to the account. If you are travelling in the USA then pick up some iTunes gift cards, which is what I do. Else there are a number of places where you can buy US gift card vouchers, though they do tend to change over time. For now go to Mediawob, and smile as you pay a commission of US$10 on a US$50 card. Part of that is due to payments processing, and there is clearly some manual work do do, so it seems fair.
Within 24 hours you should get a code – which you need to redeem on your account. To do click on the redeem link in the top right hand corner of iTunes.
I now have 2 USA and 1 New Zealand account on iTunes. (2 USA ones because my first one used a US credit card, which I no longer have.) I have two macs, several iPods and an iPhone and iPad. While I do have to enter in passwords a bit too often, applications and songs bought on each account will go across to all of the devices. Make sure also to authorise each computer for each account – you’ll get a pop-up if you need to.
I’ve yet to apply this thinking to my Apple TV – but I can’t wait to see what I can see.