Everything we know about Apple Card (updated x2)

Here is everything we know so far about the card, and links to additional resources.

Apple, Apple Card, iOS, Apple Pay, finance
Apple

Apple Card has generated a huge amount of interest. Here is everything we know so far about the card, updated to the present and with links to additional resources.

Introducing Apple Card

“Apple Card is designed to help customers lead a healthier financial life, which starts with a better understanding of their spending so they can make smarter choices with their money, transparency to help them understand how much it will cost if they want to pay over time and ways to help them pay down their balance,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay, announcing the service.

So, what do we know?

Late breaking news on Apple Card

We were already aware the card would link up with a clear app, offer up to 3% cashback on Apple purchases, and more.

Since then we’ve learned there will also be an iPad app, and it will be possible to raise financing for some products (particularly Apple products).

Reuters confirms that financing payments won’t attract interest so long as customers remain on schedule – so you might get 3 percent cash back on your next Mac and pay zero percent interest on the purchase over 24-months, for example.

Now 3% Daily Cash on Uber and Uber Eats

As Apple Card became more widely available on Tuesday August 20, Apple announced that it will offer 3% Daily Cash on purchased made using the card from Uber and Uber Eats. 

It also promised additional merchants and apps would be added to the list in future.

This shows how easily and quickly the company can improve and enhance its Apple Card product. (Updated 8/20/19).

You need an iPhone, iPad

Apple Card is built to work with your Wallet and you need to own an iPhone to set it up. Each card is uniquely connected to your device. An Apple Card account app will be available for iPads.

You need an Apple ID

You must have an Apple ID/iCloud account and must have two-factor authentication enabled on that account.

How long does it take to sign up?

You can join the service in a few minutes and begin using it almost immediately.

How do I apply for Apple Card?

If you are 18 or over and a U.S. resident you can apply for the card from within the Wallet app, just follow these steps to signup for Apple Card:

  • Open Wallet app
  • Tap the plus button (top right).
  • Choose Apple Card, then tap Continue.
  • You'll be asked for your personal details, once you enter these tap Next.
  • You will be given your terms for use of the card.
  • NB: The process requires a hard search of your credit history.

[Also read: Apple Card: The industry reacts]

Apple Card shipped August 20

Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed Apple Card would ship in August in the U.S. It was eventually made widely available on August 20 2019.

When will Apple Card be available outside the U.S.?

We don’t know. We understand Apple is discussing it.

How do I activate the card?

Tap the physical card with your iPhone when your receive it to activate it.

Where are the card numbers?

You’ll find no long number on Apple Card – to get that number you must look at it inside the Wallet app. Even then you will only see the last 4-digits of the actual card number.

How do I use a card without a number?

Apple provides you with a virtual card number and CVV code inside the app. You can keep this number as long as you like and use it to pay for items online or over the phone.

apple card screens Apple

Apple makes it easy to see your transactions and spending inside the Wallet app.

Apple Card is not contactless

You can use Apple Pay and your iPhone to make contactless payments, but you cannot use the physical Apple Card to do so.

Must I use a signature?

A signature is not required to use Apple Card.

You must use Touch or Face ID

You are expected to use Touch or Face ID to authorise payment. When you do a pop-up will appear depicting the card and you press the activation button.

What happens if I lose my physical card?

You can get a free replacement. You can also freeze the card using the app on your iPhone.

What about Apple Pay on Safari?

When you set-up your card Safari will automatically receive the virtual payment authorisation number (PAN). Next time you want to purchase something online it will be available to you.

apple card spending Apple

You'll be able to get a clear overview of your spending right inside the Wallet app on your iPhone.

How does the card know who it is?

When you set-up your Apple Card a unique device number is created on your iPhone. This is kept safely in the Secure Element, which can only be unlocked by you.

The unique security and privacy architecture created for Apple Card means Apple doesn’t know where a customer shopped, what they bought or how much they paid.

Can I create a new number?

You can generate a new primary Apple Card number if you wish, such as when you fear your payment details are compromised.

Does Apple Card support multi-person accounts?

You can’t have more than one person associated with an Apple Card, unlike some systems that let couples share a card.

What is the physical card made of?

The physical card you receive is made of titanium. It bears your name which is laser etched onto the card. You can replace it for free.

Will Apple Card work with Android?

No.

apple card pay Apple

The Apple Card can be used anywhere, but the best benefits are when purchases are made using Apple Pay.

How do you pay for things?

When you authorize Apple Card the Wallet app will provide a one-time security code which you’ll use on the credit card scanner.

What does this mean?

That Apple Card creates its own single-use security code makes it really, really hard for people to use the card without your permission – not least because the CVV code (the three numbers on the back of most cards) is also dynamic. In order to use your card, attackers will need to steal your phone and your face of fingerprint.

What are the fees?

There are no annual fees, no transaction or penalty fees and no other fees, the company said.

There is no foreign exchange rate fee when making transactions in currencies other than dollars (though conversion is performed by Mastercard International, and I’m uncertain how their conversion rate tracks standard foreign exchange rates.

What is the interest?

The APR is 13.24% to 24.24% based on creditworthiness, which seems a little high at the top end – however, the lack of fees may compensate for this. You may accumulate additional interest if you fail to meet a payment.

How does Apple decide what APR I pay?

Apple will use normal credit checks to assess what interest you should pay. Those with better credit will pay less, however, it will always place people at the lower end of the tier their credit score places them in, which means you’ll pay a little less.

Can I use Apple Card for financing?

In early August reports claimed it will be possible to use Apple Card to finance certain product purchases. Under these deals you won't be charged interest so long as you maintain your agreed payments.

Foreign exchange rates are controlled by Mastercard

You don’t pay any fees though.

How do I repay the card?

You can use Apple Cash to pay your balance. You can also pay directly from your bank account.

apple card summary Macworld

What are the reward rates?

You get 3% on purchases from Apple, 2% when you use Apple Pay and 1% cashback when you use your physical card. 

Which Apple purchases are eligible?

The cashback accrues to almost any good or service purchased from Apple, including retail and online store purchases, iTunes, Apple Music and “other Apple-owned properties”.

It's important to note that you don't get the 3% cash on purchases made via third-party retailers, including Apple Authorized Resellers. 

Update: Apple announced Uber and Uber Eats would also deliver the 3% cash back in August, and promised additional merchants and apps would be supported on this tier in future.

How are rewards paid?

You can have cash awards paid into your Apple Cash account, or applied as a credit on your balance.

How often are rewards paid?

Apple pays cash back daily. It calls this “Daily Cash”.

What if I return a product?

If you return a product purchased using Apple Card you'll be charged back the value of the Apple Pay Cash reward you received.

What about financial management?

The Apple Card app in Wallet will record spending, categorizing purchases to make it easier for you to find that you spend most of your spending money in restaurants and bars. The app also lets you review interest rates, spending and cash back.

What about personal information?

Apple made the point that personal data won’t be sold if you use Apple Card. Goldman Sachs has promised not to sell what data it collects for marketing purposes, though it may use some information for internal or regulatory reporting (which is normal). Data will not be shared with others, or used for internal or external marketing.

What do I do if I need help?

If you have a problem with your Apple Card account you can get immediate assistance – just contact customer support in Messages.

What does the app look like?

The highly visual Apple Card app lives inside Wallet on your iPhone. Open it and you will see an image of your card, your balance, account activity, see when your next payment is due and will be able to review your recent transactions.

You can pay money into your account to reduce your balance, tap items for further information and tap Activity to get insights into what you have been doing.

How does the payments view work?

One useful view lets you see how much you owe the card and review all available payments through a rotating view. This is designed to show you how to reduce your interest payments (ie. By paying the balance off in full), but also lets you see what difference an extra or large payment will make – and lets you pay that.

What if I lose my iPhone?

There is a bit of a problem if you lose your iPhone, it breaks and you can’t replace it, or in other situations in which you can’t access the device you used to create the account, which Goldman Sachs calls the “Required Device”.

“Without a Required Device, you will only be able to manage your Account by contacting us by phone or mail, and your Monthly Statement will only be sent to you by email or mail. If you do not maintain a Required Device, we may close your account,” the T&C’s warn.

Presumably there’s some system by which you can define a replacement device as your ‘Required Device”, but I haven't seen it yet.

Will people use Apple Card?

It looks like Apple’s reward scheme is just enough to get people using Apple Card – more importantly, it will very likely accelerate use of Apple Pay.

Will Apple’s plan work?

It looks like there’s plenty of interest in Apple Card – 85% of existing users are at least ‘Somewhat Interested” in using the service, a poll claims. Not only this, but 42% of existing iPhone users say they are “extremely interested” in using the service. Just 15% of iPhone users claim to have no interest in Apple Card.

Where can I see the terms and conditions?

Goldman Sachs Friday published the terms and conditions that will relate to the card, these included a ban on cryptocurrency purchases and jailbreaking, both of which may invalidate the account.

When can I get an Apple Card?

Apple’s new service will be available this summer, including in Apple Stores.

Must or miss?

Judging from the level of interest I’ve experienced in the card this week, Apple Card is going to push use of Apple Pay and iPhone customer retention over the edge. It also sets the new standard consumers should expect from any credit card. I think Apple will grab a big chunk of users for this service.

Has the service been tested?

Apple and Goldman Sachs employees have been trialling Apple Card this summer. Goldman Sachs Head of Digital Finance, Harit Talwar, who is testing Apple Card, recently said:

“I love using the card It is top of my wallet both physical and digital wallets… I must tell you, the moment I take out the physical card everybody says ‘Wow’…”

What can’t I buy?

You can’t use Apple Card to pay for criminal transactions, nor are you permitted to purchase cryptocurrency using the card. You’re also not permitted to jailbreak your Apple Card device.

Where can I find more information?

Apple has published some resources to help you get to know Apple Card:

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.

Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

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