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The Apple Card is so much more revolutionary than you think

Published Aug 7th, 2019 2:20PM EDT
Apple Card
Image: Apple

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Here’s one of the best indicators that a new era has dawned at Apple, which has been looking for new products and services to focus on as sales of the company’s all-important iPhone continue to mature.The fiscal third-quarter earnings Apple reported just a few days ago revealed a remarkable new reality for the company, with sales of the iPhone now representing less than half of its overall revenue. Under CEO Tim Cook, however, the company has not been waiting idly for that maturation of the product line and has redoubled its efforts on selling services, subscriptions to things like Apple Music — and on introducing new products like Apple Card, which a new survey says is shaping up to be a ‘hit’ product for Apple, despite barely any marketing.

A J.D. Power study takes a look at consumer sentiment for the Apple Card in advance of its full launch and made the determination that not only is consumer awareness high but that the product — which gives you back a percentage of every purchase in ‘daily cash’ — is shaping up to be a nice success for Apple. Something that’s all the more impressive for Apple given that it lags some leading card industry players in perks like offering a sign-up bonus, which suggests that the Apple brand alone is almost strong enough to sell the card, along with an expectation of ease-of-use, consumer-friendliness and of course the company’s stance on privacy.

“Despite an incredibly tight credit card marketplace,” the survey note, “it looks like the Apple Card will be a hit because of the power of the Apple brand and a history of delivering on a superior user experience.”

Speaking of that user experience, watch how fast the card is activated using an iPhone:

Indeed, Apple has foregone the usual industry route of enticing customers with a fat sign-up bonus and a lucrative rewards program (though Apple’s is “compelling” in its own right), choosing instead the perks mentioned above and a “no fees” stance.

More from the survey:

“The Apple Card has not even launched yet, and 38% of U.S. adults are already aware of it. Among those who are aware of the card, 35% say that they are somewhat or very likely to apply for the card. Those numbers are even higher among younger credit card customers. Among 18-29 year-olds, over half (52%) are aware of the Apple Card.”

Some hurdles do exist to the card’s wider acceptance, though it remains to be seen how high those obstacles actually are. The survey, for example, notes that 11% or so of consumers have switched their primary credit card this year, which suggests the status quo is a powerful force to overcome here. Likewise, almost 50% switched because they wanted “a better rewards program,” which is not Apple Card’s central focus.

Regardless, the survey’s thesis is that Apple Card enjoys “a strong level of awareness,” especially for a product that’s not been heavily marketed.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.