The grapevine is abuzz with rumours of Apple’s new credit card being launched to the world. What is Apple Card? Are the benefits worthwhile? Is it really any different to your current credit card?
Also, will people be getting an Apple Card simply for the kudos of having their gorgeous looking titanium card?
Apple Pay and Apple Card
First and foremost ‘Apple Card’ is a virtual credit card that you can use with Apple Pay. The physical card is an optional extra which is useful if you find yourself in a location which doesn’t accept Apple Pay on your mobile. In the UK that scenario is pretty much non-existent as you can use Apple Pay pretty much anywhere that takes contactless payments. I understand from colleagues in the USA this is not quite the case and Apple Pay, indeed contactless, is not universal. So a physical card is handy.
Goldman Sachs – God’s banker and now Apple’s
The financial giant behind Apple’s new credit card is Goldman Sachs. All your data about purchases, locations, stores visited, etc will, necessarily, be shared with Goldman Sachs. It is, after all, the regulated company responsible for the safety of your cash – or credit.
Additionally, according to the internet (so take this as you will) no one will be refused a card account. There will be a sliding scale of interest rates to cover all the risks from safe bets to high risks. It’s not clear if things like bankruptcy or CCJ (in the UK) will be a bar to getting the Apple Card. We can only wait and see.
What are the benefits of Apple Card?
Apple Card has cashback – yippee!
So, whenever you buy anything with Apple Pay or the Titanium Apple Card you get cashback.
|3% Cashback||Whenever you buy anything from Apple. Whether that’s in an Apple Store, apple.com, iTunes or the App Store. 3% Daily Cashback in your pocket – virtually in your Apple Cash card.|
|2% Cashback||Purchase anything using Apple Pay and you get 2% cashback.|
|1%||If you find a place that doesn’t take Apple Pay then you’ll get 1% back when you use your shiny new card.|
There are better deals out there if cashback really floats your boat. Apple’s offering is kind of middle of the road in this respect.
Apple Wallet Integration
One of my big bugbears with my bank’s app is that it is not very easy to figure out where that odd charge a month ago took place.
Inside the Apple Wallet you’ll be given a plethora of data about your spending.
Apple Card maps integration
You’ll be able to see where and when you made a payment. Hopefully nothing too risqué!
Instant fraud alerts allow you to authorise or decline the payment before it is made. This is very useful. I have lost count of the number of transactions declined by my bank and my card suspended. Then having to phone the bank, wait, speak to someone about your transactions and finally get your card reinstated. The last time my visa card was suspended was for payments at the office canteen FFS!
Pay your card bill easily from Apple Wallet. Chose the amount and pay straight away or schedule a payment later in the month to suit your own cashflow.
No fees or charges with Apple Card!
OK, so this sounds like a stupendous benefit. Miss a payment and there are no punitive penalties. No fine, no increased interest.
BUT the interest rate on the card is variable and set when you apply. If you are a risky customer expect to be granted a card but with higher interest rates, You’ll continue to pay these rates all the time you are not paying down your debt.
Will I get Apple Card?
I originally asked if Apple Card’s benefits were worth it? Is it really different from any other credit card I hold? The Cashback is a small but handy feature and it’s certainly better than no cashback. There are better deals out there if you look around so if cashback is important you may go elsewhere.
For me, though, the integration with Apple Pay is a big plus. Being able to see my spending in real-time, to be able to track exactly where I spent money and to be able to manage it in a single app, the wallet, on my phone is a big plus. ~Not being stopped by a fraud flag on my card is also a big plus. At times this year, it has felt like my bank was flagging fraudulent payments just for fun. So fraud alerts in real-time are important.
Finally, though, I am a sucker for new shiny things and will be applying as soon as I get my invitation – nice eh? an invitation for a card. It makes me all fuzzy and warm inside.