Apple and Goldman Sachs are believed to be collaborating on an Apple credit card. Citing people familiar with the two companies’ plans, The Wall Street Journal reports that the credit card will be linked to the iPhone and come with points and other features to track users’ spending. The Apple card will reportedly target budget-conscious users rather than trying to compete with credit cards that offer large amounts of points for money spent on the card.
Why an Apple credit card?
According to the WSJ, Apple executives have talked about adapting some of the visual design of the company’s fitness-tracking app, which displays rings that close gradually as users hit their exercise goals. The credit card will also reportedly send notifications about users’ spending habits and offer approximately 2% cash back on most users and possibly even more on purchases of Apple products or services.
Sources reportedly told the Journal that the credit card could enter testing internally as early as next week. They also said Goldman Sachs competed with Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and others to partner with Apple on its credit card.
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The point of the Apple card would be offering deeper integration with the company’s Wallet app. It would make sense for Apple to offer more features in the Wallet app with its own credit card to differentiate it from the numerous other credit cards available on the market.
Will it work?
Forbes contributor Ron Shevlin is doubtful that the Apple credit card will work. He notes that the company already offers a card issued by Barclays, and he doesn’t think the perks reported by the Journal are good enough to attract consumers. He also doesn’t think the money management features described by the newspaper will attract consumers, especially since none of the described features seem new, and consumers don’t seem all that interested in the ones that already exist.
Indeed, Apple and Goldman face an uphill battle when it comes to competing with the plethora of cards which are available. Only time will tell whether the Apple credit card is only a desperate gamble to attract more dollars. The iPhone maker is seeking new revenue streams as iPhone sales, and management has repeatedly highlighted services as the next major area of revenue growth.
For its part, Goldman Sachs is trying to attract a new market as well: the middle class. The firm is still trying to build its personal loan and online savings account business Marcus.