X
CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET
Advertiser Disclosure

CNET Money’s mission is to help you maximize your financial potential. Our recommendations are based on our editors’ independent research and analysis, and we continuously update our content to reflect current partner offers. How we rate credit cards

Advertiser Disclosure
CNET editors independently choose every product and service we cover. Though we can’t review every available financial company or offer, we strive to make comprehensive, rigorous comparisons in order to highlight the best of them. For many of these products and services, we earn a commission. The compensation we receive may impact how products and links appear on our site.

I used the Apple Card for 3 months. Here's what I think of it now

The Apple Card saved my bacon when I got robbed. But it's still not the top credit card in my wallet.

headshot-lexy-2-crop
headshot-lexy-2-crop
Lexy Savvides Principal Video Producer
Lexy is an on-air presenter and award-winning producer who covers consumer tech, including the latest smartphones, wearables and emerging trends like assistive robotics. She's won two Gold Telly Awards for her video series Beta Test. Prior to her career at CNET, she was a magazine editor, radio announcer and DJ. Lexy is based in San Francisco.
Expertise Wearables, smartwatches, mobile phones, photography, health tech, assistive robotics Credentials
  • Webby Award honoree, 2x Gold Telly Award winner
Lexy Savvides
3 min read
apple-card-credit9637
James Martin/CNET

The Apple Card caused a splash when it first launched in August. Designed for iPhone users, it has no fees, offers daily cashback rewards and works with Apple Pay , but it also exists as a physical titanium credit card. I've been using my personal Apple Card for three months and it saved me when I got robbed. But if it wasn't for that extreme situation, I don't think I would have used it as much.

You can find my full rundown of my experience so far with the Apple Card in the video on this page or read on for the abridged version. Also, our earlier review of the Apple Card breaks down more on what the credit card offers and how it works. 

apple-card
Watch this: Apple Card: 3 months later

No credit card number, no problem

For me, the biggest advantage of the Apple Card is what it doesn't have -- a number on the physical card. When I got robbed, my wallet was stolen with cash and all my cards (including the Apple Card). Fortunately, I still had my phone, so I was able to cancel everything fairly quickly, but it didn't stop the thieves from swiping a couple hundred dollars before I could shut down the cards.

apple-card-credit9594
James Martin/CNET

Because I could still access the Apple Card number through the Wallet app, I was still able to buy things online (like my lunch) even while my other banks were reissuing cards and updating the virtual numbers in my wallet, which took several days. And of course, I still had my phone so I could buy things at places that accept Apple Pay.

I acknowledge that this is an extreme edge-case situation. If my phone had been stolen as well, it would have been a lot more difficult to put a stop to all the cards as quickly. And because interaction with the Apple Card is done through the iPhone, if you lose that phone, you need a backup, like another iOS device. There's no web interface either, which makes it tricky to see your balance or pay off bills without a phone.

Apple Card rewards

How does it compare to other credit cards? Great question. We have several comparisons of the Apple Card versus other popular cash back and travel cards: Apple Card versus Amazon Rewards Visa and Apple Card versus Chase Sapphire.

Other cards in my wallet offer more perks -- like travel rewards, or the option to select a category for cash back. This means the 3% tier isn't limited to specific merchants like it is on the Apple Card.

68-apple-card

The color-coded breakdown of spending is great.

Sarah Tew, CNET

What does set the Apple Card apart for me is the visual breakdown of spending, so I can see exactly where my money is going each month. I love the color coding but would also like to see a way to set limits or alerts in certain categories once I reach a set target. Mostly, I think the interface is really helpful if you want to clearly see how you should pay off your card each month to avoid interest payments.

In November this year, an investigation has been launched into the Apple Card's issuing bank, Goldman Sachs, to determine if there is gender discrimination in allocating credit limits.

Is the Apple Card worth it for me?

Overall, I'm mostly using the Apple Card for purchases where I can maximize the 3% cashback, such as the Apple Store or at Walgreens. Apple has been adding more retailers at the 3% tier (including Nike as of this week) so hopefully over time I'll have some more options to choose from. But for everything else, I still reach for the other cards that offer the most value for what I'm buying, whether that's for travel or dining rewards, or greater cash back.

Read more: How to choose a credit card