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There's been a lot of conversation around the question, "is Apple Card worth it?" Some people lambast its rewards, while some tout its money management. It seems like the only thing everyone can agree on is that the physical card is really sweet looking.
Rather than diving into all of the facts and figures about Apple Card, which you can find here, let's talk about who it's actually going to be beneficial for and who it's probably not for.
It goes without saying that there is no one card to rule them all. Everyone is coming from different financial situations and has different ideas of what kinds of benefits will suit their unique situation best. So, let's find out what kind of person you are, and whether Apple Card would be a good fit.
Who it's worth it for
If you want to track spending easily
If you are trying to be more conscious about your spending and are looking for a credit card with built-in money management tools, you'll be hard pressed to find one that does it better than Apple Card. The card tracks all of your spending and breaks it down into automatically sorted categories and merchants. It allows you to see weekly or monthly spending totals overall, in each category, or even down to the merchant. This is a great tool to understand your spending habits and make beneficial adjustments. The app even shows you in real time how much a payment affects how much interest you will pay.
There are a number of apps out there that try to do this (Mint, etc). However, none do it with such accurate automation as Apple Card. Apple is even leveraging iPhone's accessibility features to allow users to use things like Voiceover and other technologies to manage their Apple Card. Those features are also going to find their way into the application process. If you do most of your spending with a credit card and are struggling to track it all, Apple Card will be a great option for you.
If you want a simple rewards system
Credit card rewards have gotten more and more complicated. Some earn different rewards in different categories. Or more rewards in different months, at different stores. Or categories. Or random extra rewards at a specific merchant if you "activate" your reward after digging through the issuers' website or app. And redeeming your rewards can earn you different amounts, on different things, at different times. You can also wait up to three months to receive your rewards on some cards. Suffice to say that rewards can get as complicated as you want them to, and many people are so overwhelmed that many rewards go unused.
Apple Card is making rewards easy to earn and easy to redeem. It's a drop-dead simple cash back card that earns you 3% on all purchases at Apple, 2% on all purchases when you use Apple Pay, and 1% on all purchases using the physical card. Daily Cash gives you all your rewards the day after you made the purchase. That's it. If you're looking for a simple rewards program with an easy way to redeem, Apple Card has your back.
Who it's not worth it for
If you're looking for a specific reward
Apple isn't trying to please everyone with this card. It's easy to understand and use cash back rewards card with a fantastic card and money management tools. But it isn't for everyone. There are plenty of other cards that beat Apple Card when it comes to rewards if those rewards are in categories that are most important to you. If you are a frequent flier, you're going to get much more value out of a travel-focused credit card rather than Apple Card. There are also cards that can earn up to six times what Apple Card offers when it comes to certain everyday categories like groceries and gas.
Apple Card is a great "same rewards for everything" card. That said, you may find most of your spending lands in a specific area that would benefit you to choose another card entirely. If you're willing to leave rewards on the table for that titanium card, I understand. Most, especially travelers, will find they're leaving too much.
If you're relying on certain benefits
Apple Card, while impressive in their software offering and in the ease of use of their rewards program, is lacking in the benefits area. Other than fraud protection, the biggest benefit of Apple Card is in its privacy. Apple will never know what you purchase, where you bought it, or how much you paid. Goldman Sachs, Apple's partner for the card, has also promised not to share any of your data with advertisers. It's a great benefit and a first in the industry, but there are a lot of other benefits missing from the card that many rely on.
Most cards go much further in the additional benefits they offer outside of cash or points. Things like travel protection, rental car insurance, purchase protection, warranty extensions, and worldwide concierge services. Some cards even provide accidental damage protection for your phone for free; something we kind of wish Apple Card did for your iPhone, but understand why not. While getting your rewards the next day off of a large purchase with Apple Card can be enticing, taking a few seconds to think about it could change your mind. You might find that the rewards you receive won't compare to the extra benefits you'd get by making the same purchase with another card.
Apple Card has the opportunity to disrupt a market that is long overdue for a shakeup just by the sheer size of Apple's user base. However, it's not going to be for everyone, and there are already a number of companies doing innovative work to provide excellent rewards and benefits for all sorts of lifestyles. Is Apple Card card worth getting? Of course, if it has the kinds of features and benefits that speak to you. If it doesn't, there are plenty of cards waiting to. Ask yourself what is most important to you, and find the one that fits.
Our favorite card
With its sign-up bonus having just jumped to 60,000 points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months, now's the time to add the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card to your wallet. Even better, future travel and dining purchases earn 2x points per dollar spent and it includes valuable travel benefits like primary car rental insurance. All of these extras make its $95 annual fee easy to justify.
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Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.