Apple drops long time credit-card partnership with Barclays for Goldman Launch

Apple Inc. and Barclays Plc have dropped the rewards program from their longtime credit-card partnership in advance of the debut this month of a new Apple Card with Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

The Apple-branded Barclays card is no longer offering $50 worth of Apple gift cards and providing three points per dollar spent on Apple products to new customers, according to changes on its website. Card users had been able to convert every 2,500 points into $25 of credit toward Apple merchandise.

Apple and Goldman have spent the past few months preparing their co-branded credit card, which will offer 3% cash back on Apple purchases. In new terms disclosed this week, the companies said Apple Card customers also will be offered separate financing plans for certain purchases, in addition to the ability to carry a revolving balance. The card will be introduced this month, Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook confirmed earlier this week.

Spokesmen for Apple and Goldman Sachs declined to comment about policy details for the card. Barclays confirmed the change to the rewards program, noting they don’t apply to existing cardholders.

Barclays is seeking to expand its U.S. card portfolio by 10% a year, compared with the 6% growth it achieved in the second quarter, the banks’ executives told analysts this week. The bank recently renewed its partnership with Wyndham hotels, and it has co-branded cards with Uber Technologies Inc. and JetBlue Airways Corp.

Apple and Goldman didn’t specify in the offer terms what types of purchases with the Apple Card would be eligible for financing plans, which haven’t been previously reported. The amount due for those purchases won’t be incorporated into any interest charges, according to the card’s terms.

Such financing plans have become popular tool for lenders such as JPMorgan Chase & Co. and American Express Co., which started offering similar products in an effort to capture more of their customers’ borrowing. Typically, such plans offer consumers the ability to make large purchases and pay them off over a set period of time at a fixed monthly fee for the service.

The Apple-Goldman card has been promoted as exclusive to Apple’s Wallet app, which is thus far available only on iPhones. But Apple is planning a companion application for iPad users to be able to sign up and manage their Apple Card. Beta versions of the software update for Apple’s current iOS 12.4 operating system have hidden references to an Apple Card management app for the iPad, according to independent app developer Steve Moser.

The card’s terms and conditions released this week say that an account requires an “iOS or iPadOS device that has a version of iOS or iPadOS (as applicable) that supports the use of Apple Card, has internet access, and has a passcode enabled.”

source: Reuters