Apple's newly announced credit card sounds attractive on paper: there are no late or international payments, up to 3 percent daily reimbursement, and a physical titanium card. So, are there catches?
There's a lot to know about the Apple Card, how it works, how to get it, and how it compares to other credit cards. Here is all the key information you should know about the Apple card if you are considering getting one.
How do you qualify for an Apple card?
You need an iPhone to request an Apple card, and you may also need some existing credit. Apple declined to share an exact credit score range in which it will have to be to qualify for your credit card, but from the variable interest rates listed on its site, we know that those with lower credit scores they will be subject to higher interest rates. Up to 24.24 percent. It is on a par with other credit cards in this category, such as Chase Freedom or Discover Card, which similarly offer cash rebates at no annual charge, but do not necessarily alter the status quo.
The Apple card is issued by Goldman Sachs and the payments are processed by MasterCard. Apple tells The Verge that Goldman Sachs will look for other criteria beyond the credit scores, but did not specify which one. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
When the Apple Card is available this summer, you can request it through the Wallet application on your iPhone. Once approved, you will get instant access to a digital version of the card that will automatically appear in the application. After a short waiting period, you will be sent the chip-enabled physical card, which you can use at stores that accept MasterCard. At this time, Apple does not plan to allow users to register through a web browser.
How do you use the Apple card?
You can use the Apple card in three ways. If you choose it as the payment source in Apple Pay, then you can use it wherever you normally use Apple Pay, either online or through touch-to-pay sales terminals and other contactless service points.
The physical card works Just like a regular chip credit card. However, Mastercard confirmed to The Verge that it will not accept contactless payments, so it can not simply touch the titanium card in a terminal. Non-Apple rewards have a maximum of 1% cash back per purchase of the physical card.
The Apple card does not have a number, CVV or expiration date printed on the card, but it does have a magnetic stripe and a chip. If you are paying online at a merchant that does not accept Apple Pay, you will use the third form of payment: return to the Wallet application to generate those numbers virtually. You can keep the same credit card number or generate a new number for each transaction. This is similar to how banks allow you to create new digital credit card numbers for online payments to prevent your information from being misused.
What are the benefits of the Apple Card?
With the Apple Card, Apple says "It will be easier to manage your payments." Apple is using machine learning to translate map data and banking transaction data to the exact names of the stores it visited for the purchases it made. , instead of the typical series of confusing corporate names.
Card incentives include 2 the cash rebate percentage for purchases made with Apple Pay and up to 3% cash rebate for Apple products , which include digital services such as Apple News Plus, iCloud storage, Apple Music and purchases from the iOS app . All other purchases give you a 1 percent refund.
Apple promises You will not have to pay any fees to use the card, which means that there are no annual fees, there are no international rates when traveling abroad or buying on foreign websites. or there are fees above the limit and late fees do not apply. However, there is an important incentive to pay the full balance each month: as with any credit card, you can accrue interest if you are late in payments. However, Apple does not promise penalty interest rates, so the interest rate you see when you qualify for the card is what you get. Apple will also show an interest estimator to show how much money you owe on interest if you let your balance add up. However, it is important to keep in mind that late payments can still affect your credit score.
Finally, Apple bet on privacy as one of the advantages of the card. Apple says it will not see what you buy or where you buy it. You must also authorize payment through Face ID or Touch ID, which is one of the reasons why you can not use the Apple Card with an Android device. It also has fraud alerts to notify you of any suspicious activity.
How does the Apple card compare with the rival cards?
With the Apple card, Apple has joined the ranks of technology companies like Amazon and Uber, which have their own credit cards. But their rewards are delayed in comparison: their rivals offer subscription bonuses, while Apple does not. Amazon offers a 5 percent refund on Amazon purchases and a $ 50 gift card when you sign up. Uber offers 4 percent in all restaurants, as well as $ 100 in rebate when you spend $ 500 in the first three months. "The three percent cash return on Apple products is unsatisfactory," says Tim Devaney, an expert in personal finance and credit cards at Credit Karma.
Experts, including Goldman Sachs itself, agree that the Apple Card could offer a better return of money. Apple expects to attract customers with a competitive 2 percent cash back rate on any product it buys, but not all retailers accept Apple Pay. Citi Double Cash offers the same rate of 2 percent 100 percent of the time, says Devaney.
Other credit cards also provide at least some categories of purchases that consistently offer a 5 percent refund, for example, in groceries or gasoline, although they often rotate the categories every few months. Sometimes, those categories include a 5 percent cash back on Apple Pay purchases, which makes Apple's 22 percent smaller by comparison.
"I'm not terribly excited about that," Rivka Gewirtz Little, research director of global payment strategies at the International Data Corporation, says The Verge . "I'd like to see Apple become more innovative by transforming the way we pay."
Similarly, the Apple Card interest rates of 13.24 percent to 24.24 percent credit worthiness is not better or worse than the rates of the competitors, despite what the company said about the "lower interest rates" during his opening speech. "If Apple really wanted to blow up people, they would have put a card with an annual percentage rate of 0 percent that would have been in line with the whole idea that the iPhone and the iPad completely revolutionized the industries," says Devaney. "If you were to take out a card with an annual percentage rate of 0 percent, not just the introduction, but never the annual interest rate, that would have impressed everyone."
The most prominent form in which the credit card stands out Apple is through the convenience of subscribing to the card and having it immediately available, says Sarah Silbert, senior credit card editor at The Points Guy . "It's not an unattractive option if you do not have a balance, "she says, referring to Apple's fine print on how interest can accrue if she is late with payments." You are getting a cash back, so you could do it worse. "Silbert points out that e users interested in premium designs may be attracted to the titanium material on the Apple card, similar to the way American Express cards are valued for their designs. At the same time, Apple could have offered purchase protection, which would make sense for large purchases on computers and phones, he adds.
One thing is for sure: experts agree that the Apple Card is designed for iPhone users who already buy a large number of Apple products. The three percent cash back gives them the advantage of applying a small discount each time they pay for Apple products, including services, instead of having to wait for a sale.
What happens if you lose the card?
In case you lose the Apple card, you can freeze the card and request a new one. Apple says you can continue to use your virtual card in the Wallet app while the physical card is reissued.
Similarly, Apple's approach to data privacy differs from other credit card companies: Apple relies on Goldman Sachs to secure the credit card data of users, which also means that Apple will not be the only responsible in case of non-compliance. . Once again, Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
When will the card arrive?
The Apple card will open for applications in the summer of 2019. But although there are still several months to go before the public launch of the Apple card, Goldman Sachs employees may be the first to have the card in their hands. In an internal memo shared with The Verge CEO David Solomon wrote to employees: "I know many of you are eager to apply for and use our credit card. In short, Marcus's team will come back with you with details on how we can make this happen. "
For the rest of us, we'll have to wait until the public launch to discover how the card actually works in practice. 19659032]