Last updated: 2 weeks ago
In 2019, Apple and Sachs partnered together to launch a new credit card. The Apple Card is designed primarily to be used with Apple Pay, though a physical card does exist. By visiting their Wallet app, a user can view their spending habits. Using Appleâ€™s credit card via Apple Pay, either online or at a point-of-sale terminal will merit a user 2% cashback in the form of Apple Cash at most retailers. At certain retailers, including Apple, Uber, Walgreens, and Nike, users may earn 3% cashback.
● 3% cash back at select retailers
● 2% cash back for purchases made with Apple Pay
● 1% cash back for purchases made with physical card
● Wallet app integration and spending insight
● Stylish titanium card
● No annual, transfer, or penalty fees
● 0% interest purchase installments for Apple products
Launched on August 20, 2019, the Apple Card was designed by Apple and developed by Goldman Sachs. While it's primarily designed to work with Apple Pay, Apple provides each customer with a physical, titanium card.
Goldman Sachs had stated that this was the "most successful credit card launch ever." Both Apple and Goldman Sachs have been pleased with the amount of consumer demand for the Apple credit card.
It is issued through Goldman Sachs and exists within the Mastercard payment network.
Applying for the Apple Card
Applying for the card is a relatively quick and straightforward process. A prospective applicant will need to follow the steps below.
- Open the Wallet app.
- Tap the + symbol in the top-right corner.
- Tap Apple Card, then Continue.
- Fill in the name, date of birth, email address, and phone number fields, then tap Next.
- Review the offer of credit limit and APR from Goldman Sachs, then tap Accept Apple Card.
- On the Card Added screen, tap Continue to add it to Apple Pay on the device.
Early reports stated that the card might be available to those with sub-optimal credit scores. Users with credit scores below 600 are likely to be declined. Additionally, anyone who has put a credit freeze on their account must lift the credit freeze before applying, or the application will be denied.
Apple has launched a new program specifically for users who are denied their Apple Card application. The four-month program will coach users on how best to increase their chances of being approved for the card. While paying down debt and decreasing income-to-debt ratio seems like common sense tactics, not many people are familiar with how companies make creditworthiness decisions.
Their new Apple Card financial health website will help users understand some of the key factors used during a credit card application.
The physical card is made out of mostly titanium and weighs in at 14.75 grams, or approximately half an ounce. The weight makes it somewhat lighter than other "luxury" style metal cards. There is a composite of 90% titanium and 10% aluminum alloy to give the card better sturdiness overall.
The card features no card number, no CVV security code, expiration date, nor signature. The cardholder's name is printed on the front of the card, while the Apple, MasterCard, and Goldman Sachs logos are engraved.
This design choice lends itself to a rather slick looking card compared to competitors' cards.
Upon delivery, cardholders who own the iPhone XR or newer devices can activate the physical card by moving it near the product packaging. Those with an iPhone X or earlier will need to open the Wallet app and tap it against their iPhone.
Fees, rates, and limits
Depending on the cardholder's credit history and income, There is a minimum APR of 13.24% and a maximum APR of 24.24%. The Apple Card has no yearly fees, no fees for transactions, and no fees for penalties.
It does feature credit limits. The limits are determined by the cardholder's credit score, credit age, and income at the time of application. Credit limits as low as $50 have been self-reported by cardholders, with limits of over $15,000 also being reported.
Unlike many other credit cards, only one person may use the digital card. Each individual in a household must apply for their own Apple credit card if they wish to use it.
Cardholders were offered the ability to miss their March payment interest-free by using a new "Customer Assistance Program" with Apple Support. With no signs of the coronavirus pandemic slowing down, users have been given the ability to defer payments through June.
Goldman Sachs will report credit information to Transunion, and as of July 2020, Experian as well.
Monthly Installment Plans
As of December 2019, users can purchase iPhones using their Apple Card and pay it off with a 0% interest rate over 24 months. The 3% cashback would still apply, thus giving users a great value when purchasing their new iPhone.
An update to the service in June 2020 allows users to purchase almost any Apple device or accessory to be purchased on some length of installment plan. Depending on price, devices can be purchased on 6-month or 12-month installment plans at 0% interest.
Only two products cannot be purchased using this method– Apple Watch and iPod Touch.
Use with Apple Pay
While users have the option of ordering in their physical card, the Apple Card is designed to be used alongside Apple Pay. Apple Pay is Apple's touchless, tap-to-pay payment method. Users who use their Apple Pay receive additional cashback benefits in the form of Apple Cash.
Using the card via Apple Pay, either online or at a point-of-sale terminal will merit a user 2% cashback in the form of Apple Cash at most retailers. At specific retailers, including Apple, Uber, Walgreens, and Nike, cardholders may earn 3% back when using the card via Apple Pay.
A cardholder can view their Apple Cash balance in the Wallet app. A cardholder can use Apple Cash at retailers, sent to others via iMessages, withdrawn to a bank account, or even used to pay down the Apple Card balance.
The Wallet app
Cardholders can view additional information about their card inside the Wallet app on their iPhone. There, a cardholder will be able to see any outstanding balance, remaining credit, weekly activity, itemized transactions, and make payments.
The Wallet app also provides insights into how a user may better use their card to avoid paying interest on their outstanding balance.
Cardholders are also able to send a text message to Apple support for help understanding their bills or if they must file a dispute.
The wallet app also can export transaction data in multiple formats, including CSV, Quicken, and Quick Books.
Apple Card Controversy
In November of 2019, David Hansson, the creator of Ruby on Rails, had posted to Twitter that he'd received 20 times the credit limit of his wife. He alleged that Apple had been indicative that Apple was taking part in gender-biased practices.
It should be noted that Goldman Sachs, not Apple, handles all applications and determines a user's APR and credit limit.
Goldman Sachs' spokesperson, Andrew Williams, had responded by stating, "Our credit decisions are based on a customer's creditworthiness and not on factors like gender, race, age, sexual orientation or any other basis prohibited by law."
The allegations piqued the interest of Wall Street regulators, who began an investigation to determine whether New York law was violated and if Goldman Sachs' algorithm practiced gender-biased discrimination on applicants of the Apple Card.