RealTime IT News

American Express Launches Net-Linked Card

American Express launched Blue, a new credit card with an e-wallet feature, smart cart functions and a Web site where customers can pay their bills online.

The no annual fee card offers a Web site that lets users download information from Quicken or Microsoft Money; use online financial tools to calculate net worth, cash flow and retirement goals; and review a variety of entertainment content including upcoming concerts.

The card also offers a fraud protection guarantee that protects users from any unauthorized charges made online with their card.

At launch, the card will offer an introductory interest rate of 0 percent for the first six months and an ongoing fixed rate as low as 9.99 percent for revolving balances as long as the customer is in good standing.

"Blue continues the American Express tradition of creating custom-designed products that appeal to specific segments of the consumer marketplace," said Alfred F. Kelly Jr., president of the Consumer Card Services Group at American Express.

"With 64 million adults surfing online regularly and 10 million, people shopping online, it is clear that consumers are quickly adopting and adapting to the Internet."

For those customers who want to make online shopping easier, in November the company will be offering for free, one-click shopping with the American Express Online Wallet, into which customers may enter their purchase information such as name, card account number and shipping address.

Blue from American Express also has a "smart" chip. Using a smart card reader, which is available for free from American Express through Jan. 31 and connects to the user's PC, cardmembers can more securely access their American Express Online Wallet when making purchases online.

The chip stores a unique digital certificate that acts much like a key, the company said.