It’s not merely that it’s, oh, a credit card. It’s that it’s a credit card with very few truly distinguishing features. Yes, it lives on your phone. Yes, you also get a, gasp, physical card made of titanium. The white titanium slab contains no numbers or expiration date—only your name, an Apple logo and the chip.
Look, though, at Apple’s introduction video and you feel a dense weight descend. What else can you feel on hearing it’s “the only credit card to take advantage of the power of iPhone”? To celebrate the launch, Apple didn’t release an expensive ad featuring people dancing at the mere prospect of being anointed by Cupertino as being creditworthy.
If you have the Apple Card, you get 2% back on purchases you make using Apple Pay—3% when you use the card to buy apps, movies and devices from Apple. The rewards appear daily in a digital Apple Cash card, which you can use with Apple Pay or to pay down the credit card’s balance.
Did you know there’s an app on your phone called “Wallet?” If not, don’t worry—it’s mostly for boarding passes, concert tickets and other things you’re better off storing elsewhere. Now, though, Wallet has a purpose: It’s the true home for Apple Card.
Buying stuff with the Apple Card is… just like buying with any other credit card. You can swipe the card, type in your card number (which isn’t on the card, but instead is hidden three taps deep in a settings menu) or tap with your phone or watch; merchants process it like a standard Mastercard.