How to Change iMessage Apple ID on Mac

Sep 5, 2021 - 1 Comment

How to Change iMessage Account on Mac

Do you want to use a different Apple ID specifically for iMessage from your Mac? This is actually pretty easy to do in macOS, though using multiple Apple ID’s is really not recommended.

Most users sign in with their Apple accounts when they set up their Macs which is then used across all of Apple’s services like iCloud, Apple Music, iMessage, FaceTime, etc. Of course, you can log out of your Apple ID and use a different account on your Mac, but this affects the rest of the services too. However, the method we’re about to discuss will let you use a different Apple ID just for iMessage while the other services are still linked to your primary account.

It’s important to note that using different Apple ID’s is not recommended by Apple and can lead to a lot of confusion, so don’t do this without a very compelling use case.

How to Change iMessage Apple ID Account on Mac

Whether your Mac is running macOS Big Sur or newer, or an older version of macOS, the following steps remain the same. So, without further ado, let’s get started:

  1. First, launch the stock Messages app on your Mac from the Dock or Applications folder.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac

  2. Next, make sure the Messages app is the active window, and then click on “Messages” from the menu bar next to the  Apple menu.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac
  3. Now, click on “Preferences” from the dropdown menu to proceed.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac
  4. You’ll be in the General section of the Preferences panel. Head over to the iMessage section.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac
  5. Here, you’ll see your current Apple ID email address that’s used for iMessage with the option to log out right next to it. Click on “Sign Out”.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac
  6. When you get a pop-up prompting you for confirmation, choose “Sign Out” again.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac
  7. Now, enter the login details for the alternate account that you want to use with iMessage and click on “Sign In”.

    How to Change iMessage Account on Mac

That’s pretty much all there is to it. You’ve successfully changed the account that’s used for iMessage.

You will continue to remain logged in to other Apple services like iCloud, FaceTime, Apple Music, and others like we mentioned earlier. However, keep in mind that you will not be able to back up your iMessage conversations to iCloud since you’re using different accounts.

In the same iMessage preferences panel where you have the option to sign out, you’ll be able to change the email address or phone number that’s used to start new conversations. For example, if you have an iCloud email address that’s linked to your Apple ID, you can use that email address instead of giving away your primary email or phone number to acquaintances.

Likewise, you can use a different Apple ID specifically for FaceTime too. The steps are pretty similar, so you should have no trouble getting a hang of it. Also, if you’re using an iPhone or iPad, you may also be interested in learning how you can switch up your iMessage accounts on iOS/iPadOS.

Did you set this up, and if so, why? Let us know your reasoning and experiences in the comments.


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Posted by: Hamlin Rozario in Mac OS, Tips & Tricks

One Comment

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  1. Milner Erlank says:

    Hi, My iMessage map has been inoperative for months. Tried to apply iMessage Apple ID change on my 2009 iMac with macOS Version 10.13.6 without success. The process rejected the three email addresses I inserted because they were already in use somewhere in my system. I do not know how to create another email address.

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