Apple Cash will work in stores that don't accept Apple Pay when iOS 17.4 launches, finally bringing it in line with Monzo, Wise, and other rivals

iPhone 14 Pro with Apple Pay on screen
(Image credit: Apple)

iOS 17.4 beta has added a useful feature for Apple Cash users, allowing them to create virtual cards for places that are yet to accept Apple Pay as a form of payment.

According to posts on Reddit, users running iOS 17.4 beta on their iPhones have spotted that they can create virtual cards within the Wallet app. For those unaware, Apple Cash arrived in 2018 for U.S. users only. With it, payment cards can be created in Wallet to buy goods, as well as being able to send cash to friends and family through iMessage.

For stores that don’t have Apple Pay, this meant you had to use a different payment method. With virtual cards now available to be created in iOS 17.4, this feature finally lets you pay for goods by debit card via Apple Cash in these stores without feeling awkward.

Banks around the world such as Monzo and Wise have offered virtual cards for several years now. You can create these whenever you want, and if you want to remove one, this only requires a couple of taps. There’s still no word on whether Apple Cash will be available outside of the U.S. for other international users to take advantage of virtual cards, however.

But if you do live in the U.S. and you’d like to try out the feature on your iPhone, you can update to iOS 17.4 beta by going to Settings > General > Software Update > Beta Updates. Be aware though that installing a beta does come with its own risks — so install with caution.

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Monzo Virtual Card on iPhone 15 Pro Max

(Image credit: Future / Monzo / Apple)

This change will finally bring Apple Cash in line with feature sets that have been offered by rival banks for years. I’ve been a user of UK bank Monzo for several years now, and I love it. The clean user interface and features like virtual savings pots and scheduled payments have been really useful in the past.

The bank also offers several paid tiers that include exclusive features, such as virtual cards. I’ve set several up and attached them to different stores, such as Amazon, as well as to specific subscriptions to Netflix and Apple Arcade. It’s a great method to keep track of what’s going out every month, without having to scroll through a long bank statement.

It’s good to hear that Apple Cash will make virtual cards available for U.S. users, as this could bring the same benefits that I’ve been experiencing with virtual cards in Monzo. There’s no word when iOS 17.4 will be available for iPhones, but if we look at previous updates, such as iOS 16.4, and the fact that it was made available around this time of year, we wouldn’t be surprised to see this huge update released by March.

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Daryl Baxter
Features Editor

Daryl is iMore's Features Editor, overseeing long-form and in-depth articles and op-eds. Daryl loves using his experience as both a journalist and Apple fan to tell stories about Apple's products and its community, from the apps we use every day to the products that have been long forgotten in the Cupertino archives.

Previously Software & Downloads Writer at TechRadar, and Deputy Editor at StealthOptional, he's also written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', which tells the story of the beginnings of Lara Croft and the series' early development. His second book, '50 Years of Boss Fights', came out in June 2024, and has a monthly newsletter called 'Springboard'. He's also written for many other publications including WIRED, MacFormat, Bloody Disgusting, VGC, GamesRadar, Nintendo Life, VRV Blog, The Loop Magazine, SUPER JUMP, Gizmodo, Film Stories, TopTenReviews, Miketendo64, and Daily Star.