Apple Digital Gifts

You can buy inexpensive holiday gifts using gift cards from Apple's online stores. You can have a gift card sent by email, or send a physical card. You can also gift a specific item in the music, iOS apps or iBooks store. This year, another gift to consider is Apple's Beats Music service. The iTunes store doesn't have a normal wish list feature, but you can still gather links to items you want and send them to those looking to buy you gifts.

Video Transcript
Hi this is Gary with MacMost.com. On today's episode let's look at easy and inexpensive gifts that you can get from Apple in the iTunes store.

So the main thing you might think of when purchasing an inexpensive gift from Apple is an iTunes gift card. The thing about an iTunes gift card is they work in any of the digital stores that Apple has. For instance you can buy something in iTunes here like music, movies, or TV shows. You can also purchase iOS apps for the iPhone or iPad. You can do that here in iTunes on your Mac or you can do it on the device itself.

You can also use money from the gift card to purchase something in iBooks, and also in the Mac App Store. So all of these are basically tied together as one account tied to your Apple ID. You get a card, say $25, you can use that $25 in any of these stores for any of these things or divide it up any way you want to do it. It doesn't matter what the card says on the outside. If the card has some musical notes on it or picture of a book, or says it is for an app store, it doesn't matter. It all goes into the same account. So you get somebody a gift card and they can use it for any of these digital downloads in any of these portions of Apple's digital stores.

So where do you get these gift cards. Of course you can find them in major stores. Even supermarkets and convenience stores usually have some iTunes gift cards available.

Now keep in mind there are two different types of gift cards. There is the Apple store gift card which is for buying hardware and things in the Apple store. Physical objects. And the iTunes gift cards for buying digital things. So make sure you get the right one.

Now if you go to the Apple store online, store.apple.com, you go over to accessories and then you scroll through this list here and the last item is gift cards. Here you can get those Apple store gift cards. You can also get iTunes gift cards. Scroll down this page here and you find out that you can get them two ways. Gift cards by mail and gifts sent by email. So if you want to get somebody something and you don't want to stuff it in an envelope and send it to them because they are far away you can just basically buy it and have it sent to them by email. The value the same it is just the matter of presentation. Now if you are wrapping a gift for somebody it would be nice to get a physical card for them and you can see that if you go into this section here you can select from all sorts of different designs, compose a message, and then add multiple cards and everything.

So there is a lot of different options. You don't have to leave the house to send a gift card to somebody.

Now instead of getting a gift card that can be used for anything you can also give a specific item. For instance you can choose a song or album or anything in the iTunes store and you can click next to the buy button and select Gift this Album. Then you can send it to an email address and you can include a message as well. You can even schedule it to be sent on a specific date so you can wait for the holidays or it is great for sending a birthday present as well.

You can even do this in other stores as well. For instance go to the iBooks store and you can select a book here and you can select Gift this Book and do the same thing. It works in iTunes here. If you go in the store to the App Store. So we'll go and search for an app. Then you can select there, Gift this App, and then you can send that app. Now unfortunately it doesn't work for the Mac App Store. It only works for iOS apps. Hopefully they will add that soon in the Mac App Store.

Now here is another option you may not know about. Here in iTunes, and you are in the iTunes Store, there is a link here for Send iTunes Gifts from the main page. This is another way you can easily send by email an iTunes gift card. But there is also this link here to Learn More About gifting.

You go in here and you can scroll down and you learn about what I just talked about, sending apps and other specific items, but you can also set up an allowance. So an allowance is a way to send somebody with an Apple ID an amount they are going to get every month. You can select anything from $10 to $50 here. So this could be kind of like an iTunes of the month club thing. Where instead of getting them a $100 gift card right then, you can gift them $10 a month for the rest of the year.

This also can be a good way for some parents to gift part or all of an allowance as iTunes money. So instead of giving cash and then having to, since kids don't have credit cards, go to the store and get an iTunes gift card and then cash that in on iTunes, they can get a monthly digital allowance like this which could help teach kids how to manage their digital purchases over the course of time before they become adults and can buy their own.

There is actually another digital service from Apple to consider. That is, of course, Beats Music. So if you go to beatsmusic.com you can look at the prices here and you can see the description now is $10 a month or a $100 a year. This now is being slowly incorporated into Apple's digital services and it really makes up for the lack of a subscription service for music that Apple didn't have before. So this is similar to Spotify and other services like it where you pay a monthly fee or annual fee and you get to listen to all the music that you want that is available on the service.

So this is another option now that you can give to somebody as a gift. There doesn't look like there is a way to directly buy Beats Music as a gift on the site but if you look around you can find gift cards. It looks like there might be an exclusive deal here with Target right now. They have a $25 and $50 gift card there. So that might be an option for getting somebody Beats Music for free for a year.

Now it would be nice if there was a wishlist functionality where somebody could see what albums you wanted or apps or whatever. Unfortunately wishlist is not that. It is basically your own personal wishlist. So you can add something just like that. Go to an iTunes My Wishlist and just see the items that you've added but nobody else can see them.

However you can use functionalities like Tell a Friend or Copy Link to basically copy a set of links to items in the store and then send that out in more of an old fashioned kind of wishlist for items. People just click on those links and jump right to the item and gift those to you.

Comments: 2 Responses to “Apple Digital Gifts”

    Tripp Frohlichstein
    11/29/14 @ 8:14 pm

    Other Apple digital gift ideas include books and calendars which you can create and order in iPhoto. I do a family calendar every year which is a very popular gift for the family and at $20 each, well worth it. They do a nice job.

    Mr. Luigi
    12/14/14 @ 6:15 pm

    I believe an Apple Store gift card is the “safest” option for gifting because with it you can buy hardware AND digital media. An iTunes gift card only allows for digital media purchases. iTunes gift cards are nice. But it can be disappointing to get one as a present when what you really want is money to help with the purchase a new iPad, iPhone, etc. Just my opinion, of course.

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