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An iPhone owner using Apple Card to make a payment. Photo: Apple

Apple today begins processing the first applications from consumers to get the new Apple Card, the credit card it is debuting in conjunction with Goldman Sachs.

Why it matters: It's part of a broader push into services from Apple, but also puts the company in direct competition with the banks and credit cards already part of Apple Pay.

  • Apple won't say how many people of those who pre-registered will be getting the cards Tuesday in the first part of what it's calling a "preview" of Apple Card.

How it works: At its base level, the Apple Card is an "iPhone-first" MasterCard that can be used anywhere Apple Pay or MasterCard is accepted. However, there are several things that make Apple Card distinct from other credit cards out there.

  • Although you can get a companion physical card, it's mobile-first and customers use an iPhone to sign up for the card, view their transactions and pay their bills.
  • The physical card has a traditional credit card number on its chip and magnetic stripe, but that number isn't on the card or otherwise visible. If they need a numeric credit card number to give out, customers can provide a different one stored on their iPhone.
  • Apple says its card has no fees including no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees and no late fees. Also it doesn't boost its interest rate if customers miss a payment. (There's no cash advance/ATM fee — because the Apple Card can't be used that way.)
  • The Apple Card rewards come daily in the form of a credit to an Apple Cash account that can be spent at merchants, sent to a friend over iMessage, used to pay the credit card balance, or transferred to a bank account. Customers get 1% back on traditional card purchases, 2% on Apple Pay transactions and 3% on goods and services purchased directly from Apple.

Go deeper: Apple's growth areas rely on its shrinking iPhone business

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Senate Democrats target billionaires

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

After failing to get a deal on other planned tax increases, key Senate Democrats are pivoting to a billionaires' income tax to pay for President Biden's social spending.

The big picture: No advanced economy has attempted anything similar on such a scale.

Anti-abortion activists' Supreme Court dreams are coming true

Photo illustration: Annelise Capossela. Photos: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

This is the moment the conservative legal movement has been building toward for decades: The solidly conservative Supreme Court is about to hear two major abortion cases within a month of each other.

Why it matters: All of this is likely to end with significant new restrictions on abortion and a clear path for Republican-led states to win the next big abortion cases, too — the culmination of a long and bitter fight for control of the judiciary.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
8 hours ago - Economy & Business

Trump's volatile return to the stock market

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios Visuals 

Donald Trump this week became both a meme stock and a social-media entrepreneur at the same time, by announcing that a new company called Trump Media & Technology Group was going to merge with an existing company listed on the stock market.

Why it matters: The medium-term promise of Trump's media company is that it will replace Twitter for anybody wanting to keep track of Trump's messages. The short-term promise is that it can be a hot new speculative vehicle for people wanting to get rich quick in the stock market.