Shared iPhone Reminders Without iCloud

Shared iPhone Reminders Without iCloud

If you’re not using iCloud on your iPhone (or even if you are) and want to have a task or to-do list and share it with your spouse you can still do it with Reminders without iCloud. In particular, you may want a grocery list or an errand list that you both can edit. Having shared lists in Reminders means you can add to the lists using Siri (on the newer devices). Microsoft has an free Email/Calendar/Contacts/To-Do service that they’re now calling “”. Here’s where we’ll set up the shared Reminders.

First, in your web browser navigate to Set up a new account. The address you pick isn’t important but it might be good if it’s easy to remember.

Once you’re logged into the web portal of, navigate to the Calendar page. You’ll see that you have three calendars already…one with the first name that you entered, a holidays calendar, and a birthdays calendar. You can ignore the last two and rename the first one to, say, “Grocery”.

Now, in your iPhone settings for “Mail, Contacts, Calendars” you can enter the new account as “Hotmail”. All you need is your email address and password. When you get to the list of what to sync turn everything “Off” except for “Reminders”. Now, when you go to your Reminders app you should see a new section with the description you just gave the account and there will be one tasks list called “Grocery”.

If your spouse sets up the account on his/her phone in the same way, you’ll both have access to the same list. Tell Siri to “Add milk to the grocery list” and she’ll put a reminder item “Milk” in the Grocery list.

Go back to your account in your web browser and add as many calendars as you wish. You can name them “Errand”, “House Repair” or whatever…they’ll appear as tasks lists in the Reminders app.

Any alerts you set on your iPhone for a reminder will also alert your spouse.

Now, if you want to be alerted of changes or additions to these Reminder lists, you’ll have to set that up at the website…and it’s via email only. In the Calendar options there, you need to check “Get notifications (reminders, changes to calendars, and daily summaries)”. Additionally, you’ll either have to switch “On” the email for the account on your iPhone, or, you’ll have to add your regular email(s) to the account for notifications…in the “How you’re notified” section of Calendar options.

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