In its latest unveil event, Apple announced many products and services, one of which was the Apple Card. As you may have guessed, the idea behind it was for the company to broaden its product range. However, the objective behind this, that most of us didn’t notice, was that this is just another Apple strategy to lure customers into the Apple Ecosystem.
For those of you who don’t know, a person is known to have an Apple Ecosystem when almost all of their devices are made by Apple. An Apple Ecosystem mostly includes iPhone, iPad, MacBook, Apple TV, AirPods, and Apple Watch. And now, with the addition of the Apple Card, there’s one more reason for an Apple user to stick to the brand.
Like all other Apple products, this does set itself apart from the rest of the credit cards physically. It is completely made out of a single piece of titanium. All the subtle details that you see on it are laser etched and the mere fact that there are no numbers on the card makes it unique and secure. Apart from these physical differences, how does the Apple Card stack up against rivals like the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa? Let’s find out.
Ease of Usage
The Apple Card can only be used via the Wallet app on your iPhone. This means that, unlike all other Apple products, this can only be used if you have an iPhone. You need the Wallet app to sign up and then observe the payments made by the card itself. As mentioned earlier, since there are no digits on the actual card itself, it does become a hassle for making manual online payments.
However, if the need ever arises, all you have to do is open the Wallet app and generate a card number and CVC on the go. This makes transactions secure at the cost of a minor inconvenience. On the contrary, the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Card, in terms of usage, is just like any other credit card. It’s the reards that set it apart from other credit cards.
For all you potential Apple Card users, here’s the disappointing bit. You don’t get any special rewards as such, which could’ve been a great opportunity to set it apart from the rest. Regardless, you do get 1% cashback on regular shopping and card usage, 2% cashback if you use the card via Apple Pay and 3% cashback if you use it on Apple stores, products, and services. The cashback amount is automatically credited to your Apple Cash balance.
This does seem like a fair bit of benefit but most of it is exclusive to Apple products and services. The 2% cashback with Apple Pay would’ve been better if Apple Pay worked everywhere a conventional credit card would. This mere limitation might make you think twice before getting this card.
On the contrary, with the Amazon Prime Rewards Card, you get 1% cashback on regular credit card purchases, 2% cashback at restaurants, gas stations and drug stores and 3% at Amazon.com and Whole Foods. Not only is this automatically better than what the Apple Card offered, but it also offers more. You can earn reward points with every use of this card and those points can be redeemed at Amazon services. 100 points are equivalent to $1. You also get a $70 gift card with the approval of the card.
Fee & Charges
On the Apple Card, there is no fee whatsoever. This is probably one of the best things about this card and kind of makes up for the lack of rewards and benefits. However, you will be charged interest over what you owe. Apple’s annual interest rates range from 13.24-24.24% based on purchases and credit score, which isn’t all that bad.
On the Amazon Prime Rewards Card, there’s also no annual fee but you do have to pay up to $38 plus interest in case of late payment. A small price to pay. In addition to that Amazon’s annual interest rates range from 16.49-24.49% based on credit score, slightly higher than that of Apple.
As it would seem, the Apple Card is better in terms of Fees but lacks the Reward aspect of the Amazon Prime Card. It is better looking, better built and is somehow more secure. If you’re already deeply involved with the Apple Ecosystem, I’d recommend this card to you 100%. But if that’s not the case, the Amazon Rewards Card would do just fine and would be more viable in real life.