Trending November 2023 # Report Explores How Retailers Are Pushing Back Against ‘Elite’ Credit Cards Like Apple Card # Suggested December 2023 # Top 16 Popular

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Bloomberg has published an interesting look at how retailers are partially footing the bill for lucrative rewards cards like Apple Card. Specifically, Apple Card is designated as an “elite” card, which means retailers have to pay higher interchange fees when someone uses it.

The report explains that interchange fees are paid by retailers, not directly by consumers. It’s part of the “cost of accepting credit cards.” Elite cards, such as Apple Card, impose higher transaction fees in order to support their rewards programs.

If a customer uses a traditional Visa card, the merchant would owe the issuing bank $1.27 in swipe fees. If the cardholder carries plastic branded with Visa Signature, the fee would rise to $1.75. That fee is then divvied up among the network, the payment processor, and the issuing bank.

Card networks, like Mastercard, are able to negotiate these deals because with retailers by citing data that shows “elite” cardholders also have more buying power than other consumers. The idea is that the additional spending can offset the higher transaction fees for retailers.

Card networks tell merchants the higher costs are justified because premium cardholders also have more buying power—so they’ll spend more. According to payment processor Auric, since January 2023 the average purchase made with premium-branded Visa cards was $50 higher than those made with regular Visa credit cards.

But retailers can’t pick and choose the cards they select, Bloomberg explains. If a retailer wants to accept any MasterCard credit cards, they have to accept all of them – including “elite” cards. The growing prevalence of so-called “elite” cards has become a point of contention for many retailers.

According to data from the Nilson Report, merchants in the United States saw the “costs tied to accepting electronic payments” increase to $108 billion in 2023. Retailers are blaming this, in part, on those elite cards.

These premium cards have become a flashpoint in negotiations between the country’s largest retailers and the Visa and Mastercard networks. Large merchants and Visa and Mastercard are still embroiled in negotiations over litigation that started in 2005, when retailers sued the networks, saying they violated antitrust laws by inflating swipe fees.

While some merchants settled the case in a record settlement announced last year—Visa and Mastercard admitted no wrongdoing—a separate class of retailers are still fighting for changes to the networks’ rules, including those that require stores to honor all of a brand’s credit cards.

There are a couple of things to note here. First off, Apple Card is a lucrative credit through certain retailers, but it is not the most lucrative card out there. That being said, it is apparently still classified as an “elite” card in the eyes of Mastercard.

Second, interchange fees have been a problem for retailers for a while, not just since Apple Card launched this year. The point of the Bloomberg piece is seemingly to highlight that more people now have an “elite” credit card this holiday season, because Apple Card is now widely available.

The full Bloomberg Businessweek piece is worth a read and can be found here.

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Students Witness History, Report Back

Ten days into their first semester as reporters for BU’s Washington, D.C., Journalism Program, students got the reporting opportunity of a lifetime: covering President Barack Obama’s inauguration on January 20.

The program, founded in 2000 by Washington Center director Linda Killian (CAS’80, COM’80), a former editor at National Public Radio’s All Things Considered, offers graduate and undergraduate students a semester-long opportunity to work in the bureaus of national news organizations such as ABC, NBC, the Boston Globe, and NPR, as well as New England news outlets like the Cape Cod Times, the Worcester Telegram and Gazette, and Connecticut Public Radio.

Last week, the students headed out early on inauguration day to capture the nation’s capital at this moment in history. They reflected on the experience for BU Today.

Despite the cold, the stress of finding New Hampshire residents to interview, and the long, long walk home through massive crowds, it was worth it to witness such a historic moment surrounded by hundreds of thousands of excited people. As a journalism and political science student, it was incredible to see so many people motivated by the political process; as a human being, it was incredible to see so many people treat each other with respect and patience in a crowd that could have easily become unruly.

Every moment — from the traditional playing of “Hail to the Chief” following the swearing-in to the chant “Nah nah nah nah, good-bye!” that rose from the crowd, directed at the outgoing president — will stay with me for a lifetime. (Not to mention the man who walked across a row of Porta-Potties to beat the crowd!)

The cold was unbearable, the walking was painful, the crowds and crushing were frightening — but none of this mattered once Obama stepped onto the platform. He spoke with such confidence, belief, and optimism for the future that one had to feel this was going to be a time of change.

I trusted Obama, believing that he would deliver positive change. I admired his family for their unity, their teamwork, and their values.

Never in my life have I seen so many politically engaged people gathered in one city so peacefully, civilized and in common agreement that this was a great day, this was a special day, but most importantly, this was a new day and a new era for Americans.

I spent most of the day literally covering the event from the sidelines — not just because of the biting winds, but because there was nowhere to go. Most of the action was at the edges of the crowds, where people paced back and forth looking for easy entrances.

Despite endless lines, dangerously crowded trains, and masses of people from all 50 states pressed cheek by jowl next to total strangers, there were no arrests or reports of violence. I saw faces of eagerness, impatience, and weariness, but not one of anger, even if the hassles some tourists suffered really justified it. The event was a powerful argument that American people are basically decent, and I was glad to be a witness to it.

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10 Apps Like Earnin Pays You Everyday ✅ (No Credit Check)

Want to invest now before your payday is credited?

Many people are using “EarnIn” , a most downloaded and used financial application that lets users (salaried employees) access their earned wages before payday.

Generally, these apps provide personal loans for a short period.

If you’re using Earnin – it’s great…!

There are many other apps like Earnin that help you make money faster, pay your expenses in time, and much more.

10 Cash Advance Apps Like Earnin











Let’s find out how much each of them will pay you. 

Turnaround time: 2 days

MoneyLion is a financial technology company that offers a mobile banking and investment platform through its MoneyLion App.

The app allows users to open a no-fee checking account, invest in managed portfolios, access personal loans, and obtain credit monitoring and other financial management tools.

Pros Cons

Multiple financing options Required subscription

No interest

Easy tracking

Turnaround time: Instant

Brigit also provides budgeting tools and financial insights to help users better manage their money.

Pros Cons

4 million+ members Stiff conduct and policies

2-min credit time Lower withdrawal amount

Intelligent prediction system

Turnaround time: 3 days

Dave app is similar to Earnin but dressed up in a bear suit that helps people save from expensive overdraft fees.

With dave, consumers could get up to $500 either in the same business day or within three business days maximum.

By paying $2.49 for a month as a subscription fee, eligible consumers can borrow up to $500 with a same-day turnaround time.

Pros Cons

Get and spend up to $500 High transfers costs

Affordable pricing

No interest

Good To Know!

Apps Like Earnin That Accept Chime

Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank, but many users consider it as a new-age, modern-kind banking characteristic.

There are many apps like Earnin that accept Chime or could be easily connected to your Chime account. Those are:






These payday loan apps work with Chime now.

Turnaround time: 3 days

Simple registration, no extra charges, and instant deposit will make your financial wellness.

Initially, you have to apply for the Payactiv Visa Card and receive your paycheck up to 2 days early.

Pros Cons

Fast and secured deposit Instant transfers cost $2.49 to $5.99

Free financial counseling

Trusted by top employers

Turnaround time: Instant

Branch is another popular app similar to MoneyLion and Dave that offers more flexibility and convenience.

Meaning, the app grants access to up to half of an employee’s next paycheck for any workforce.

Pros Cons

Instant payment solution Offer to limited employers

Eliminate the need of cash-carrying No analytics and tracking

Support digital payouts

Turnaround time: Instant

FlexWage is similar to Earnin and Payactiv. It helps employees worseness of low balance lifestyles by providing them on-demand payday solutions.

Employees can demand through the app to get their pay when they need it, before the payday period.

Other than on-demand deposits, you can also make money through Flex Pay and its associated card solutions.

Pros Cons

Get early access to wages Long confirmation process

Request for a demo No financial tracking

Multiple pay solutions

Good To Know!

Apps Like Earnin That Don’t Use Plaid

Earnin is a financial institution that doesn’t use Plaid (a financial services company) that aims to help companies build fintech solutions. Plaid, in general, facilitates communication between financial services apps such as banking, wealth, personal finances, payment, lending, etc, and users’ banks and credit card providers.

Turnaround time: Instant

DailyPay is a financial services company based in New York which provides on-demand pay solutions like FlexWage.

The company offers its service through prepared cards and apps that offer instant, no-fee access, and secure withdrawal options.

Pros Cons

No-fee in-network ATM withdrawals Subscription required

Visa debit card, use anywhere

No pre-existing bank account needed

Turnaround time: Instant

More like a friend will help you analyze your spending through analytics and graphs and also provide seamless ways to save money.

Unlike Earnin, you have to be their member. Membership starts at $2.99/mo which may be expensive in case you didn’t find it helpful.

Pros Cons

Tools to manage finances Monthly membership is required

Notifications for low account balance

Easy process and convenient support

Turnaround time: Same day

Pros Cons

$8 a month Plus membership required

Instant funding is available through Walmart Available through select employers only

Helps you stay on top of bills

Turnaround time: One business day

Possible has helped millions of Americans lifestyles by catering friendly and convenient mobile instalment loans with no late or penalty fees.

Using the app, users can get a payday loan of up to $500 and can pay it back over time in 4 instalments. Other than this, you can also unlock access to Possible Card with one-time payments that offer you up to an $800 credit limit in minutes.

Pros Cons

Same-day funding available Only available in select states

Borrow up to $500 Must meet the income requirement

Pay in instalments

Good To Know!

Apps Like Earnin That Work With Varo

Varo is a financial institution that provides online banking with no hidden fees to its consumers. Competitor to Earnin, it provides majorly similar features including fast and early payday credit, no overdraft fees, and support of 55K+ fee-free ATM withdrawal.

Frequently Asked Questions Can Earnin like app give me $500?

Yes. An app like Earnin can help you access more than $500 (Up to $750) per pay period of money you’ve already earned.

Are there any other apps like Earnin?

Earnin app is not the one-of-a-kind on the internet. There are various Earnin alternatives you can try. For example; Dave, DailyPay, MoneyLion, and Brigit are some top used apps over Earnin.

What apps let you borrow money instantly?

Based on our research, we’ve found that Branch, FlexWage, and DailyPay let you access instantly from $50 to $250 before your payday period.

Is Dave and Earnin the same?

At some point, both are similar but there’s a difference. Earnin allows you to access hard-earn money based on work hours, all day, everyday. On the other hand, Dave lets you access your payday credit just two days before the day the check is usually deposited.

Apple Aggressively Demands That Retailers Cease Stocking Banned Galaxy Gear

Apple is reportedly going after several United States-based resellers and wireless carriers who have Samsung’s Galaxy gadgets on offer, choosing to send takedown notices stemming from a recent sales ban rulings.

In a report over at his blog FOSS Patents, patent expert Florian Müeller notes that Apple’s legal sharks contacted U.S. telcos and retailers, demanding they remove the banned Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet and Galaxy Nexus smartphone…

According to Samsung’s court filings [PDF document], letters Apple’s San Francisco law firm sent to downstream customers on June 28 and July 3 “greatly overreach, incorrectly claiming that third-party retailers are subject to the prohibitions of the preliminary injunction, which they clearly are not”.

The South Korean firm, which is embroiled in more than two dozen patent lawsuits with Apple across the globe, is adamant that third-parties “are permitted to sell their existing inventory, even without a stay”.

According to Müeller, Apple’s takedown notice requires sellers “at a minimum” to “immediately remove for sale the banned product from all physical and online venues under their direction or control”.

Apple and Samsung obviously have diametrically opposite ideas as to how to decipher Judge Lucy Koh’s order which states the injunction encompasses Samsung’s employees and agents, but also “those acting in concert with any of them”.

Apple makes use of the legal phrasing in its takedown notice, here’s an excerpt:

The court order applies not only to the named Samsung entities, but also to anyone “acting in concert” with them. Apple thus believes that the order extends to you because you may be selling, offering to sell, or importing the Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer.

Apple’s lawyers then demand that the seller immediately cease to sell or stock the Galaxy products and “any product that is no more than colorably different from this specified product”.

Colorably different, that’s a laugh.

Sprint won’t like this, that much is certain.

I for one am unsure whether Apple needs to be so pushy about this ban.

Firstly, none of the U.S. carriers and resellers is a party to the Apple-Samsung litigation.

Secondly, the Apple-Samsung patent infringement trial begins July 30 so why the rush?

And thirdly, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is twelve months old now and probably doesn’t sell like hot cakes. Though the U.S. Courts of Appeals upheld the tablet ban, Apple shouldn’t waste energies and should instead let retailers move the remaining stock as they won’t be able to replenish it for as long as the ban remains in effect anyway.

Besides, Samsung has a host of other Galaxy Tab tablets on offer in various screen sizes and price points that Apple should worry about, such as the Galaxy Tab 2 and Galaxy Tab 7.7.

Lastly, how the heck does Cupertino expect resellers to comply with the takedown now that the Courts of Appeals temporarily suspended the Galaxy Nexus smartphone ban?

And this just in, the Federal Circuit sped up proceedings for the Galaxy Nexus appeal. As a result, an unresolved injunction appeal shouldn’t keep the Nexus off shelves for the duration of the related Apple vs. Samsung federal lawsuit, due to start in about two years, as Apple hoped it would.

Man, what a mind job.

What’s your read on Apple’s takedown notice?

How To Use Your Apple Card For Online Or In

We could physically feel your excitement for your Apple Card, either you are proudly showing off the sleek physical card, or you are waiting for it to arrive at your doorstep. But before you take your Apple Card for a ride, here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to use Apple Card to make purchases in-store or online. In case, you still haven’t applied for Apple Card, go through our guide on how you can check your credit score before applying for Apple card.

Quick Links:

Before we move ahead to payments, you should make Apple Card as the default card in Wallet. For one, this will enable Apple Card to show up first whenever you use Apple Pay, making its use quick and straightforward.

There now your Apple Card will be the first one displaying whenever you are making payments using Apple Pay, whether online or in-store.

How to Use Apple Card for Purchases In-Store via Apple Pay

You can use Apple Card for in-store purchases as long as the store accepts either Apple Pay or NFC (near field communication) payments. In this scenario, Apple Card can be used through the Wallet app.

Step #1. First and foremost ask the store manager or check if you can spot the signs that indicate the use of Apple Pay or NFC payments.

Step #3. Depending on your device, authenticate either via Face ID or Touch ID.

Step #4. Hold your phone near the payment reader to complete the payment process.

And just as simply you have made an in-store purchase with your Apple Card using Apple Pay and earned yourself two percent Daily Cashback.

How to Use Apple Card for In-Store Purchases Without Apple Pay

If the store/businesses do not accept Apple Pay, then you can use the beautiful titanium physical Apple Card for payments. Just before payments make sure, you have activated your physical card using your iPhone and the Apple wallet service.

Step #1. Take your physical card and either hand it over to the cashier or swipe or insert it at the payment terminal.

Step #2. Complete the instructions suggested by the cashier or the payment terminal to complete the transaction.

Note that when using physically, Apple Card works in a similar manner as any other credit card. Though always prefer using Apple Card via Apple Pay if available as using the physical card will earn you only 1% daily cashback, instead of the 2% gained when Apple Pay is used.

If you are wondering about a great wallet to go with the sleek and elegant Apple Card, then explore our special post covering all the best wallets for your Apple Card.

How to Use Apple Card for Online Purchases

For online purchases, you can use your Apple Card through Apple Pay. In case, the online store does not take Apple Pay; you could also use Apple Card as any other credit card and manually enter the card information. To find your Apple Card account number, CVV and expiration date, so as to make your online payment.

As for making payment through Apple Pay, follow these steps:

You will receive 2% daily cashback if paid with Apple Pay and 1% daily cashback if you’ve paid with your physical card.

Signing off…

Who knew that one day, Apple would launch an Apple Card and make spending so simple, transparent, and safe all at once. In addition, the daily cashback works as a tremendous lucrative towards opting for Apple Card.

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The founder of iGeeksBlog, Dhvanesh, is an Apple aficionado, who cannot stand even a slight innuendo about Apple products. He dons the cap of editor-in-chief to make sure that articles match the quality standard before they are published.

Phishing Emails: What They Are And How To Report Them

Emails are a popular way to keep in touch with people, be it friends, family, or co-workers, but often companies that you deal business with will send you the occasional promotional email if you signed up for subscriptions.

In this piece, we’ll go over some of the things you can look for to tell if the emails you’re getting are legitimate, or if they’re a con artist trying to scam you of your personal information.

What is phishing, and why is it a thing?

Low-life people do this for all kinds of malicious intents and purposes; one of the most common is identity theft. You can, however, protect yourself from these kinds of emails; the best way to go about that is to know how to spot a phishing email, and know what you should do when you come about one.

Signs that an email you received is a phishing email

In a detailed support document, Apple explains some of the most common characteristics of a phishing email. We’ll go over them with you below and try to explain them to the best of our abilities.

1. The email headers have incorrect information in them

For example, if you receive an email from “Walmart” about your most recent purchase, and the final received line says something like “Recevied from chúng tôi (123.456.789.120)” then it’s probably a fraud because “machax” has nothing to do with Walmart, and the IP address probably doesn’t match that of Walmart’s web servers either.

2. Links in the email take you somewhere other than where it should

Another sure sign that you’ve been phished is when an email you’re sent has links in it that claim to take you to a certain website, but take you to another one instead. You can hover your mouse over a link in an email, and OS X will automatically display the URL that the link will want to take you to.

3. Websites you visit from the email are fake

You have to be careful in many of the instances where you see a link in an email, because some hackers will throw together a really good mock-up of a legitimate website that can be very convincing when you load it up. Many of the websites are designed the same and have the same logos all over them, but there’s one pretty good way you can tell if the site is legitimate or not.

The latest versions of many web browsers, such as Safari, Firefox, and Chrome will do a check to ensure the website is legitimate. If it passes the Extended Validation (EV) check, which is a check to ensure the website is legitimate, then the company name in the URL bar will be shown in green color instead of black.

If you visit a website you usually see a green company name in the URL bar, but if you see it black instead, you might consider backing out before you enter any valuable or personally identifiable information, such as credit card numbers, because the website might just be waiting for you to submit that information to a hacker for malicious use.

4. The email refers to you generically, instead of by name

Since most high-end companies that you subscribe for emails with will have your name on record, legitimate emails will typically call you by your name. A phishing email often refers to the recipient with a generic name that could fit the picture in many cases, no matter what your name is.

For example, if the beginning of an email from Walmart says, “Hi Anthony,” then you’d have less to be wary off than an email from Walmart that begins with, “Dear valued customer” because it shows that the email came from a source that knows who you are rather than a source that doesn’t and is just trying to refer to you as something universal so it fits the thousands of other people who are receiving the same phishing email.

5. The email came to an email that you didn’t give the company

If you subscribe to a company with one email (email A) and you end up receiving an email from that company in another one of your email inboxes (email B), then you have a strong reason to be wary of the email.

Since you didn’t give the company email B, how could they have possibly known they were sending the email to you? Better yet, how did they get that email in the first place? Since you subscribed with email A, you should have received the email in the inbox of email A.

If you can’t explain why an email arrived in the wrong email inbox, you should steer clear of it. Emails should only arrive in the inbox of the correct email address when you subscribe for emails. Any emails that end up in the inboxes of your other accounts are probably fake and may be trying to lure you into a trap.

Protecting yourself from emails you think are phishing

If you receive emails like any of the above, then you probably have a strong case to believe the emails are trying to lure you into providing personal information. If you receive a phishing email, here are some safe practices for you to keep in mind.

1. Compare information of the new email with past emails

If you have received legitimate emails from a company before, such as Walmart, you should compare the contact details of that email to another email claiming to be from that same company.

For example, if I received an email from Walmart before, and the new email claims to be from Walmart too, I can compare the email addresses to see if the sender is coming from a Walmart address or not.

Although email address spoofing is possible, this is a good first place to check, because some morons will send emails from their personal email or a completely unrelated email instead of taking the time to properly spoof their email addresses.

If you receive an email claiming to be from Walmart, and it’s an @Gmail account, then you obviously know something’s up. Also pay attention to the language in the email, such as the way the email refers to you.

2. Don’t provide personal information

Unless you’ve confirmed with the company that the email was legitimate, you should never provide any personal information to an email that you believe is a phishing email.

This includes personal information like:

Your address

Your credit card details

Your social security number

Your maiden name

Your passwords

And so forth…

Typically, legitimate emails will never ask for your personal information. They’ll just link you to a site where you have to log in with that site’s username and password, and will give you information from there, but if an email asks you for your login information for a service, which is unlikely from business-dealing companies, you should not provide it in the chance that the email could be trying to steal an account of yours.

3. Don’t download or open attachments

If you suspect an email is a phishing email, don’t download or open attachments that may be connected to the email. Some of the attachments may contain malware, which may try to spy on your key presses or steal passwords and other valuable information as you enter them.

Most automated emails from legitimate companies rarely ever include attachments, and will be fully-coded in HTML instead so you don’t have to open any attachments.

How to report a suspected phishing email to Apple

Of course, reporting an email is no guarantee that the messages will stop, and reporting legitimate emails won’t help the cause, so you should only ever report obvious phishing emails and ones that you truly believe are doing nothing but trying to steal your personal information or cause harm to your computer.


Don’t be a victim of a phishing email. Although many phishing emails are completely obvious to some, they may not be so obvious to your mother, or grandmother, or someone else who isn’t as technology-literate as you are. Spread the word and keep the emailing system safe for everyone!

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