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Apple Card could expand to India, four years after US rollout

Published Jun 23rd, 2023 8:12AM EDT
Apple Card
Image: Apple Inc.

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The Apple Card could finally expand to another country than the United States. This “reinvented” credit card debuted four years ago, and it’s a way to integrate Apple’s hardware and software benefits with a product that would eliminate fees, help you pay less interest, get cashback, and with a more straightforward interface available in your Wallet app.

With a titanium finish and no card information – except your name – Apple wanted to reinvent the credit card in a partnership with Goldman Sachs. While it was rumored that this product could eventually expand to Canada or the UK, it seems the second country actually to get it could be India.

According to MoneyControl (via MacRumors), Apple is talking with banks and regulators to launch the Apple Card in the Asian country. The publication says that the company’s CEO, Tim Cook met with HDFC Bank CEO and MD Sashidhar Jagidshan during his trip to India in April.

Interestingly enough, these talks reportedly happened while Apple was also interested in launching Apple Pay in the country. The tech firm is discussing with the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) how this could happen.

MoneyControl says, “It is not clear whether these discussions are regarding its credit card being powered by NPCI’s Rupay platform or whether this is for Unified Payments Interface (UPI). The advantage of launching a Rupay Credit Card is that it can be linked to UPI as well. In India, only banks are allowed to launch credit cards. UPI allows customers to make seamless and fast payments by scanning QR codes through mobile phones.”

Besides HDFC, the publication heard that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) could also co-brand the Apple Card in the country.

Apple shifts focus to India, but does it mean launching Apple Card?

While BGR has reported that Apple is planning to move its supply chain to India due to geopolitical tensions between the US and China, not only will this transition take years to finalize, but Apple won’t cut ties with one of its biggest markets.

In addition, the Cupertino firm just recently released Apple Stores there, and with no signs of Apple Pay launching in the country, it doesn’t make sense for the company to be preparing for the Apple Card release. Even though India is a huge market opportunity for Apple, the situation is closer to other third-world countries, such as Brazil, than the US, meaning Apple can grow significantly; still, a limited number of people are willing or can pay for higher prices of products.

For example, India has a huge second-hand market for iPhones, and Apple usually promotes the cheapest models there. Indeed, India has all the potential to manufacture Apple products, receive new stores, get Apple Pay, and even the Apple Card, but this will take a while.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.