CivicScience | Just Another Credit Card or Not Just Another Credit Card?

Finance, General, Technology

Just Another Credit Card or Not Just Another Credit Card?

Image Credit: Photo by Mark Solarski on Unsplash

In August last year, tech giant Apple launched its Apple Card, a credit card backed by bank king, Goldman Sachs. The card offers a long list of perks, as all credit cards do, but a few set the Apple Card apart. Most notably, the physical card will be optional. 

The company emphasizes that the card represents its commitment to “simplicity, transparency and privacy.” But over the course of its six month lifespan, has it taken off? 

CivicScience asked more than 13,000 U.S. adults about their experience with the Apple Credit Card since its release in August. It’s important to note that the Apple Card is only available to iPhone users.

Apple Card 101

The Apple Card’s most touted features are focused on integration with the rest of the Apple brand. Users are encouraged to use Apple Pay for purchases which gets them 2% cash back, rather than the 1% back they would get by using the physical card. In addition, the Apple Card will offer an interest-rate estimator based on a customer’s payment amount and the total amount due.

These perks may have struck a chord with Millennials, as this age group is the most interested in giving the card a try.

The card is also somewhat gendered in appeal, with men expressing greater interest in – and awareness of – the card than women.

Regarding income and residential status, use and interest in the Apple Card was even. With the basics of the card squared away, we can take a deeper dive into what may be driving interest. 

Apple Card + Mobile Payments = A Winning Combination

Given that the Apple Card is designed to give cash back when users make a purchase with Apple Pay, it only makes sense that mobile payment users are enthusiastic about this new card. Enthusiasm is high, with 81% of those who plan to try out the card already avid users of apps such as Apple Pay, Venmo, and PayPal.

The Get-Out-of-Debt Card? 

The card’s ability to estimate interest payments may also appeal to those trying to be debt-free. Current and intending users report the highest instances of credit card debt. So while they may not be out of the woods with their finances just yet, they may hope this card can help get them there–or simply lend them more money in the process.

CivicScience data also show a correlation between interest-free payment programs and Apple Card intenders. U.S. adults who intend to use programs like Affirm or Afterpay over index as intenders of Apple’s credit card. It would be wise for Apple to think about rolling out similar payment plan offerings for new customers of its Apple Card as a sign-up incentive.

At barely six months old, the Apple Card is still in its infancy. However, initial response indicates that the perks are resonating with a variety of audiences. Those who are looking for more cash back, who are already fans of mobile payment apps, and who are currently in debt, are highly interested in this new tech-meets-big-bank venture. 

However, the launch of the card and it’s resulting push toward mobile payments represents not just another credit card to consider, but something much larger: Apple’s ever-growing desire to retain its loyal following. Beyond iPhones and computers, the company now has the potential to wield its influence over every purchase, rewarding those who feed back into the Apple machine. 

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