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Apple Ends Buy Now, Pay Later Loans

Consumer electronics giant Apple (AAPL) has ended the buy now, pay later loan program that it started last year.

The move comes after Apple said it is transitioning to allow installment loans at its Apple Pay service through third-party companies such as Affirm (AFRM).

Apple also said that it plans to offer credit and debit cards through major U.S. banks such as Citigroup (C).

Apple said it will no longer issue its own buy now, pay later loans that had enabled customers to buy products online and pay in four interest-free installments at prices up to $1,000 U.S.

The discontinuation is a sign that managing the loan program inhouse didn’t fit with Apple’s strategy, especially as the company refreshes electronic devices such as the iPhone.

Apple said users who want installment payment plans at online checkout would gain access to them through financial intermediaries. The new policy applies to Apple customers worldwide.

Apple said its priority with Apple Pay, its online payment platform, is to enable secure and private payments.

Going forward, existing customers with buy now, pay later loans will continue to have access to Apple Pay to manage and pay their outstanding loans, said the company in a news release.

Before it was discontinued, the buy now, pay later program, known as “Apple Pay Later,” enabled users to apply for loans within the iPhone “Wallet”App app.

The stock of Apple has gained 17% over the last 12 months to trade at $216.67 U.S. per share.