Apple iOS 12.2, Apple News+, Apple Card

Screen Time is pretty good, but can always use more. It has that very Apple feature cycle where you expect more easy release, but they tend to keep it overly simple. The second item below should be good:

Screen Time
– Downtime can be configured with a different schedule for each day of the week
– A new toggle enables easily turning app limits on or off temporarily

And a review of Apple News+:

Currently, magazines offered by the service are a mix of rich, responsive content based on Apple News Format and fixed, high-resolution “scans” that behave like pages of a PDF document. I was happy to see that the majority of magazines I’m interested in such as Wired, Rolling Stone, and The New Yorkerhave been built with Apple News Format, which brings a host of advantages: layouts are richer (with animated elements, swipable galleries, and more), text can be resized, and each issue offers a Table of Contents that lets you jump directly to a specific story or section of the magazine.

And then the Apple Card, mostly from a competitive angle:

…and Apple just took on a bevy of competitors including the following:


  • Capital One and other credit card issuers such as American Express, Bank of America, and Citibank. 

  • In a blog post, MasterCard highlighted its involvement with Apple’s digital first card. Apple is using MasterCard’s token services and M Chip technologies. 

  • Banks that have built in personal finance apps and rely on credit cards for margin.

  • Apps like Intuit’s Mint. 

  • Payment apps like PayPal and Venmo that have an app presence but not a physical one. PayPal also issues its own credit and debit cards with Synchrony Bank as the issuing bank. 

  • An architecture and financial setup that makes Apple Card as compelling as a rewards program. Customers get three percent Daily Cash on all purchase made with Apple; Two percent with Apple Card and Apple Pay usage and one percent with the physical card; and one percent with the titanium Apple Card. 

And: “Apple Card will be available this summer.

So, add Apple to the FUD list on your opening, vendor pitch slide, esp. for banks. “What will they do next?” your slide will imply, “stealing your customers, making you just a backend, at best.”

Then, some analysis from the financial analysts at Keybanc:

Apple’s services efforts appear less compelling the further away from user lock-in they go. Apple began its presentation by showing the definition of services: “the action of helping or doing work for someone,” an insinuation that its services business is an act of kindness bestowed upon the Company’s users and content partners. The irony in this is that Apple’s Services segment generates the vast majority of its profit in areas where Apple faces no competition or has a massive advantage due to user lock-in. In other words, its success in Services to date appears to be more a result of leverage over user control than a result of kindness or service to its ecosystem participants. The services announced today ventured beyond the walled garden of iPhone-linked services into markets with more-established competition. In these areas, we believe Apple’s rate of success and profitability are likely to decline vs. its current lineup of services.

They’re not too hot on Apple Pay being a big deal:

The ability of Apple to transition from a mobile phone maker to a trusted and highly engaged financial service offering remains an open question, yet we applaud innovative efforts and see the greatest disruption occurring on the issuer side of the equation with the non-traditional pick of Goldman. The choice of Mastercard and rewards construct largely follows industry standards and showcases the power of the traditional payment processing value chain (e.g. V, MA). The decision to omit a card number and thus encourage Apple Pay usage online is interesting, but is unlikely to be a needle-mover within the e- commerce landscape (e.g., PYPL). A rewards structure linked to Apple Pay Cash is interesting but is likely to yield relatively small payment volumes and we see limited demographic overlap with Venmo or Square Cash (e.g., PYPL, SQ).