As some of you know I buy a lot of books. A LOT. I currently have over 4000 and I like them all downloaded on my phone and iPad, not “ready to download” but actually there. For years I have run into problems with iBooks which doesn’t seem designed to work with the combined models of lots of books that are then downloaded. The last few times I have bought or setup replacement devices (I smash screens a lot) the books wouldn’t download unless I selected each one manually. 4000 times.
This time setting up a new replacement I got a new fun error “this book cannot be downloaded as you don’t have enough storage”. Off to log a genius call I go…
Apple answer 1: Maybe you were out of storage? (Optimistic)
Me: Nope. I have 170GB free
Apple answer 2: Did you backup your previous iPad? (Hopeful I’m an idiot)
Me: Yep, it’s all automatically done and in the cloud and it must be there because it knows what books need to be downloaded
Apple answer 3 (after more research). Oh I see, it’s working as designed. It only downloads new books you order not books you already have in the cloud. (Please don’t ask any more questions , just say thank you and go away)
Me: Really? So it downloads all apps and all music but not all books
Apple: Um, yes? (no that doesn’t sound right does it? damn)
Me: Interesting. Can you send me a link to a page confirming that is the functionality
Apple. Sure. Let me find one. (She’s onto me, there’s no link)
Apple Answer 4 (after more research and a call back). So I can’t find a link but that’s definitely how it works, it won’t download your existing books from the cloud (Sound forceful and confident and she’ll go away)
Me: Except it did. It downloaded a few hundred before stopping and then not doing any more for at least 2 hrs and now I can get it to work by individually selecting each book. All 4000 of them.
Apple: Ah, well it only downloads what you had backed up in the cloud as downloaded on your previous iPad (clutching at straws)
Me: So all of my books then. Because all of them were on my existing iPad
Apple: Oh. Well I will do more research. Are you OK in downloading each one by clicking on it for the remaining books or you could reset and re-setup the iPad and see if it works this time? .. The cloud was very busy yesterday with everyone downloading catalina (that last one at least made me laugh)
I did suggest it at least be escalated to the iBooks development team who could then review how their iCloud downloads are (not) working under load but since I’ve suggested this many times in the past I don’t hold out hope.
2200 done and counting… click click click click