| Cult of Mac

How to finance a MacBook


There's more than one way to finance a MacBook.
There's more than one way to finance a MacBook.
Photo: Pixabay/Pexels/CC

Macs offer great value, but they aren’t necessarily cheap. After all, Apple’s most affordable laptop, the MacBook Air, currently starts at $999. If you need a capable computer that you can take anywhere, but you don’t have enough cash on hand to buy a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro outright, you have options.

This post is brought to you by 800LoanMart.
In the FAQ below on how to finance a MacBook, we lay out the options available to you, ranging from Apple Card Monthly Installments to buy now, pay later plans from companies like Klarna and Affirm.

Only loyal Apple customers can use Apple Pay Later


iPhone using Apple Pay Later
Apple Pay Later: For the rest rich of us.
Image: Apple

In order to be approved for Apple Pay Later, the company’s own buy now, pay later service, individuals will need to be loyal Apple customers. The service has strict hoops you need to jump through: Apple will check your spending at Apple Stores, purchases and subscriptions on the App Store, Apple Cash payments, Apple Pay history and more.

Even if you work for Apple, you may only be approved for a $1,000 loan. The feature continues to undergo internal testing after being delayed since September, according to Bloomberg.

Apple refuses to give up on iPhone hardware subscription service


iPhone 14 Plus vs. iPhone 14
Multiple Apple financial services efforts have hit engineering hurdles.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple continues working on its long-rumored iPhone hardware subscription service despite hitting several roadblocks. The service was first rumored to launch in late 2022.

With a subscription service, Apple will allow customers to get the latest iPhone by paying a monthly fee. This would save them from shelling out the total device cost upfront.

Apple Pay Later could launch next month with iOS 16.4 [Updated]


Apple Pay Later
Apple Pay Later could finally be ready to launch.
Graphics: Apple/Rajesh

Apple Pay Later reportedly has entered beta testing among Apple’s retail store employees, signaling that the “buy now, pay later” service is nearing public release.

The move comes months after Apple announced the financing option at its Worldwide Developers Conference last June.

Regulatory scrutiny starts before Apple Pay Later even launches


A major regulator points at Apple Pay Later to express concern over Big Tech entering the short-term loan business.
A major regulator points at Apple Pay Later to express concern over Big Tech entering the short-term loan business.
Photo: Apple

When Apple said in July at WWDC22 it would launch Apple Pay Later with iOS 16, it effectively said it would enter the short-term loan business, known for “buy now, pay later” plans.

So it’s no big surprise that the Cupertino tech giant — accustomed to regulatory scrutiny in the U.S. and abroad — is now facing it from financial industry regulators.

But what’s somewhat surprising is that regulators are making noise about a host of concerns even before Apple Pay Later comes out.