Thursday, October 8, 2009

Rants on -- things to improve

After my initial few days of euphoria from using, I find myself using this service less and less these past few days.  It's not the technology is lacking, in fact, the pie charts and graphs are great ways for me to monitor my spending and saving habits.  The interface is very simple and user friendly -- like using an Apple Computer.  I am not annoyed by the ads and shameless "promotions", being in the same industry, I am aware that they do have to make their money somewhere (since the service is free to the consumer).

But I am not satisfied with the service.  The only parallel I can draw is that this was for a very long time the same fundamental difference between "Mac"/Apple and PC users.  Traditionally, the "Mac" or an Apple Computer appeal to the users who has never used a personal computer before.  They want something simple, easy to use, and quick to learn.  On the contrary, most traditional PC users were individuals who were more computer savvy and wish to have more control over individual preferences and settings.  No one will argue that back in the 1990s, Macs were much easier to use than Microsoft Windows based PCs, but you could do a lot more with a PC.

I signed onto hoping for a fully integrated financial solution, but that was not the case.  For the traditional individual who has just a basic checking and savings account, this is a service that will be very useful for them.  For those who has more advanced needs and a more complicated financial portfolio, there is some holes that still needs to be fixed.

The "Budget" feature on the homepage is a very interesting and useful function, and I love their "rollover" feature.  I have noticed that the initial settings are artificially low for me.  Considering has the technology to automatically categorize most of my spending, and claim they have over 616 days of my spending and saving history on record, they should have enough information to calculate my average spending for each category as a starting point.  If the goal is for me to control my spending and spend less than the month before, this would be a great way for someone to start managing their budget without having to go through a lot of set-up work.  Of course, the option should still be there if said individual chooses to modify such setting.  If you choose to not take advantage of the budget "rollover" function, should also give you an option to have the previous month budget be the next month budget if you end up spending less the month before.

My next gripe with is that they are still not fully integrated with realistic market metrics.  I do not feel I should have to input my own car value.  Shouldn't they be integrated with KBB ("Kelly Blue Book") or Edmunds?  In addition, the partner they use to calculate home values is seriously lacking -- the service calculated my recently appraised $720,000 condo to be worth $400,000. 

Lastly, they are not yet integrated with all of the financial institutions.  I do enjoy having one dashboard where I can see my 401K, Roth IRA, and my bank accounts.  They unfortunately do not have an option for me to integrate my whole life policy (which has cash value) or any other more advance portfolios. 

My overall review of is the service is a great start, but there is still a long way to go.  Hopefully, one day, all of us will be able to manage and keep track of our finance with only one dashboard. 

No comments:

Post a Comment