If Karl Malden were telling you "don't leave home without it," he could just be referring to your iPhone. While you can't yet replace your wallet with your iPhone, a handful of credit card applications have made themselves indispensable to its users.
Credit Card Issuers' Proprietary Apps
A handful of credit card issuers have helped set new standards of customer service with their popular, free iPhone apps:
- Bank of America: One of the first iPhone banking apps remains near the top of the charts because of its simplicity.
- American Express: Members can track reward points and manage company expenses across multiple AmEx accounts on the same screen.
- Discover Card: Cardholders can track cash back reward amounts and sign up for special money-saving promotions instantly.
Dozens of banks add dedicated iPhone apps to the App Store every month. A highly responsive iPhone app can replace a frustrating call center exchange with a fun and informative online browsing session. Real-time information helps prevent going over your spending limits.
Combination Credit Card Apps
Of course, most of us maintain more than one credit card account. That's why developers also offer apps that connect us to multiple information streams at once:
- Personal Assistant: A frequently featured app, Personal Assistant pulls key balance and purchasing information directly from credit card issuers' secure websites.
- Mint: The companion app to the popular online budgeting and expense tracking website, Mint offers snapshots of daily and monthly spending.
- AT&T Mobile Banking: An app enhances AT&T's existing mobile banking features by reporting credit card transaction details for banks without their own dedicated iPhone apps.
Whether you like keeping your credit cards separate or tracking them in a single app, the iTunes Store has a solution that's right for you. Most credit card apps are free, with some advanced features costing just a few dollars to activate.
The iTunes App Store ranks credit card applications by release date and by popularity, making it easy to discover new apps. Even if you didn't purchase your iPhone at an Apple Store, specialists at Apple's retail locations can answer questions about many popular apps when you stop in for a free workshop.