Apple's marketing machine left nothing on the table leading up to the launch of Apple Card on August 20th. Apple Card is extremely clean looking, shiny, made of titanium and contains no numbers. It provides plenty of feedback about your spending to help improve your financial health. The card also comes with a daily cashback rewards program. Despite all of the hype, now that the card is out in the wild, what is it really like to use?
Apple Card isn't Apple's first foray into credit cards. It had a credit card way back in 1986. More recently, it's had a credit card through Barclays for some time. But Apple Card is a technological advancement compared to its previous credit card offerings.
How does Apple Card's rewards program stack up? It's cash back rewards come in three levels:
- 1% - physical card.
- 2% - Apple Pay (iPhone only).
- 3% - Apple and Uber products, subscriptions, and services.
3% might sound like a great deal, but subscribers can get 6% cash back by using the AMEX Blue Preferred card when buying HBO through Apple's subscription service. Additionally, while Apple products rarely go on sale through the Apple Store, they are often on sale at stores such as Amazon and Best Buy, which equate to savings that are larger than 3%. For general cash back, Discover Card's rolling 5% cash back categories are hard to beat.
Apple Card's application process is probably one of the simplest among all credit cards. Because your info is already in iCloud, there isn't a lengthy application to fill out. You can elect to receive a physical card. Once it arrives, just hover it over your iPhone to activate.
Because of the physical card's thickness, it can be a little difficult to use in some swipe and insertion machines. Also, Apple Card doesn't offer the extended warranty or price protection features that other cards do.
Apple fans will most likely flock to the Apple Card. For others, they may find that their existing cards already offer more compelling benefits.