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Apple Card vs. Prime Visa: Which Credit Card Is Right for You?

The Apple Card is designed for the 21st century, but is it a match for Amazon's popular rewards credit card?

Katie Teague Writer II
Katie is a writer covering all things how-to at CNET, with a focus on Social Security and notable events. When she's not writing, she enjoys playing in golf scrambles, practicing yoga and spending time on the lake.
Expertise Personal Finance: Social Security and taxes
Jaclyn DeJohn Former Editor
Jaclyn was a CNET Money editor with a fondness for the sweet spot between numbers and words. Overseeing CNET's credit card coverage, she wrote and edited news, reviews and advice. She has experience covering business, personal finance and economics, and previously managed contracts and investments as a real estate agent. Her tech interests include Tesla, SpaceX, The Boring Company and Neuralink.
Expertise Credit cards, banking, home equity, mortgages
Katie Teague
Jaclyn DeJohn
4 min read

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Apple and Amazon are two of the biggest names in tech, and each has its name on a credit card. The cards stand out in different ways. For example, the Apple Card has a better flat rate on all purchases, while the Prime Visa offers a welcome bonus. Since each card is integrated within its company's separate ecosystem, the particular usefulness to you will depend on how widely you use the brand's services. 

The Apple Card primarily lives in the Apple Wallet app, which can be used anywhere that accepts Apple Pay. You need to have an iPhone (or iPad) to use those services, but you can also request a physical Apple Card if you don't want to pay with your device. 

The Prime Visa offers high rewards rates, but the best rates are applicable to shopping at Amazon businesses, like Amazon.com and Whole Foods. That means you can get a lot of value out of it if you regularly shop with these merchants.

To decide which card is better for you, consider the details of each offer and compare them to your own spending habits. We've laid out the specs below with some of our own input.

7/10 CNET Review
Card Highlights
Intro OfferN/A
APR19.24% to 29.49% Variable
Intro Purchase APRN/A
Recommended CreditN/A
Reward Rates
  • Apple Card gives you unlimited 3% Daily Cash back on everything you buy at Apple
  • With every purchase you make using your Apple Card with Apple Pay, you get 2% Daily Cash back
Annual Fee$0
Rewards & Redemption Details

Apple Card

  • Rewards: The Apple Card offers cash back that can be used anywhere, at any time. Use the cash back to pay for groceries, pay a friend or pay down your credit card. The cash back is automatically delivered to your Apple Cash balance or to the card as a credit balance.
  • Where to earn: Earn 3% cash back on anything from Apple stores (namely the Apple Store, apple.com, the App Store or iTunes), including games, in‑app purchases and services such as your Apple Music subscription and iCloud storage plan. Receive 2% cash back at other stores by using Apple Pay (using the virtual card on your phone) and 1% cash back in stores that don't accept Apple Pay (using the physical card). There are no earning caps, but your credit limit can max out the amount of cash you earn.
  • No fees: There are no fees for a missed payment or annual fee for cardholders with the Apple Card, and there are no foreign transaction fees. You will, however, still be charged interest in addition to what you already owe if you maintain a balance.
  • Security features: The Apple Card has no credit card number on the physical card. There is a virtual card number in the Wallet App for when you use the card with Apple Pay. You can also see the pinpointed location and business of where a purchase was made.
  • Other features: The Apple Card is paired with the Wallet app, which has the appearance of a budgeting app. Spending summaries are available to show how much you've spent in each category. Purchases are color coded based on the type of things you purchase, such as food or clothes.
  • Wallet app (and iPhone) required for sign-up: The Wallet app is exclusive to Apple's own iOS devices, so if you don't have an iPhone (or iPad) you can't sign up to use it. Sorry, Android fans.

Prime Visa

  • Rewards: With the Prime Visa card, you earn a percentage of cash back on your purchases. There's no cap on what you can earn. Plus, when you're approved for the card, you'll get a $150 Amazon gift card. You can see your rewards balance on the checkout screen when you make a purchase.
  • Where to earn: Earn 5% back on purchases at Amazon, Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods, as well as for travel booked through Chase, plus 2% back at restaurants, gas stations, local transit and commuting (including rideshares), and 1% back on all other purchases. Many retailers now have an Amazon store to sell their items, so always check Amazon before making a purchase so you can get 5% back.
  • Fees: There's no annual fee or foreign transaction fees, but there are late fees for late payments of up to $39 plus interest.
  • Card options: Amazon offers two Visa cards. One is the Prime version, which requires you to have an Amazon Prime account. The other is the Amazon Visa* and offers 3% back at Amazon, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods and for travel booked through Chase rather than 5%. A Prime membership is not needed for this card.
  • Extra perks: For some select products purchased on Amazon, you can receive 10% cash back or more.

Which one's better for you?

Aside from the Apple Card's perks like financial tracking, security and deep integration with Apple Wallet, the main differences between the two boil down to usage and rewards.

If you purchase a lot from Amazon, the Prime Visa is probably a better bet in terms of overall value. 

On the other hand, if you shop primarily at other online and physical retailers that accept Apple Pay, the Apple Card's 2% cash back is great and could be a valuable addition to the (virtual) wallets of savvy shoppers. It's also a solid choice if you're likely to occasionally make a late payment. 

It's worth noting that since the Apple Card's 3% cash back is restricted to Apple's own stores, you might get a better deal if you purchase an Apple device on sale at another store (such as Amazon or Walmart). Hardware prices at Apple's own stores are often higher than other retailers.

A closer look at the Apple Card credit card

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*All information about the Amazon Visa has been collected independently by CNET and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

The editorial content on this page is based solely on objective, independent assessments by our writers and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It has not been provided or commissioned by any third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services offered by our partners.