Touch ID for the iTunes Store is great, when it's not asking for your password

Prior to the launch of the iPhone 5s, I went on record on the iMore Show with my one desire for the then much rumored fingerprint sensor. If it arrived and didn't allow me to buy apps and content from iTunes by touching my finger to it, then I wasn't that interested. Delight then, that Apple took the stage, announced Touch ID, and that we could use it to buy things. Delight, quickly followed by epic frustration.

Why frustration? Because I still find myself entering my Apple ID password at present twice a day, minimum. I'm referring to a message which pops up just after hitting the install button on a new app from the App Store. It says;

Confirm Apple ID Password for "........." to Renew Touch ID Purchases

The only instance I've come across elsewhere on the iPhone 5s that specifically requests passcode input over Touch ID is when you restart the device. That's understandable, but it also doesn't require entering a 20+ character password. I have a long and complex Apple ID password – as should everyone else – which is precisely why I was so excited when Apple announced Touch ID support for the stores. I'm lazy. And entering a 20+ character password every time you want to download an app gets tiresome.

When you look into the details, I completely understand why Apple is asking you to verify your fingerprint from time to time. Since your Apple ID is connected to your personal details, your credit card, it's only natural that there's an added layer of security over it. I get it. I don't get why it happens twice a day. But likewise, toggling access to Touch ID on for the iTunes and App Store requires you to enter your Apple ID password first. So again, is the twice a day frequency really necessary? After all, I've validated it once just to turn it on.

Or perhaps, am I just incredibly unlucky? At least two other members of the iMore team experience the same as I do, so I know I'm not totally alone. We do download an often insane amount of apps in the line of our work, so maybe we're just noticing it more often?

On the whole, I'm a fan of Touch ID. More so than I thought I would be. But while my biggest desire heading into it was delivered, it wasn't delivered in a way that wows me. I'm left a little disappointed. We're only at the beginning, so hopefully it'll keep getting better, but right now it's only a great experience when unlocking my iPhone.

What about you guys, though. What's your experience been like this past week with Touch ID? Best thing ever? Waste of time? Somewhere in the middle? Let me know in the comments!

Richard Devine

Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy. Follow him on Twitter and Google+