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Apple’s new credit card is aimed at revolutionizing people’s wallets the same way the iPhone and the Mac revolutionized smartphones and personal computers.
The Apple Card, announced Monday and coming out this summer, has a handful of consumer-friendly features like no annual fee. You’ll also earn 3% Daily Cash (Apple’s term for cash back) on Apple purchases, 2% back on purchases made through Apple Pay and 1% back on all purchases made with the physical card. Apple did not say whether the new card will offer a sign-up bonus.
You’ll only be able to apply for the card if you have an iPhone — and your phone will have to meet certain specs for you to apply through the iPhone Wallet app.
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If you apply for the Apple Card and get approved, the card will be loaded into your Apple Wallet — so you can begin making payments from your phone within minutes of being approved at eligible retailers that accept Apple Pay.
There is a physical Apple Card, made of titanium. But the integration of the card with your iPhone is designed to create a super-smooth purchasing experience, encouraging you to use and manage the card primarily through your phone and use Apple Pay more often.
This integration also allows you to use any cash back the same day you earn it. Daily Cash can be redeemed for new purchases you make with Apple Pay, or used toward your credit card balance. And if you ever need help with your card, you can text customer service from your iPhone instead of calling.
The Apple Card charges few fees. There’s no annual fee. No late fee. No over-the-limit fee. No foreign transaction fee.
Unlike many other credit cards, the Apple Card includes features that encourage cardholders to stay on top of their balances. For example, the card offers the ability to make more frequent payments and suggests paying more each month to help cardholders pay less in interest. If you do carry a balance, the Apple Card charges variable APRs between 13.24% and 24.24% (as of March 2019), depending on the cardholder’s creditworthiness.
Apple also claims the Apple Card will be secure because it uses Touch ID and Face ID to authenticate every purchase you make.
From a rewards perspective, the Apple Card falls short compared to other co-branded rewards cards.
At first glance, Apple’s second-generation credit card issued by Goldman Sachs looks similar to the version from Barclays, which offers three points for every $1 you spend on Apple purchases, two points for every $1 spent at restaurants and one point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
But when you look beyond the surface, you’ll find the new Apple Card’s cash back offers more flexible redemption options compared to the Barclaycard Visa® with Apple Rewards, which only allows you to redeem for Apple Store or App Store and iTunes gift cards.