By Katherine Muniz Thu Sep 26, 2013
Since its inception in 2007, Mint has stolen the spotlight as the best personal finance app on the market. From WIRED to CNN Money, Mint has received accolades from every corner of the web. And it’s easy to see why — as a free online personal finance service, Mint’s appeal is undeniable.
Mint works by pulling all your personal finance accounts into one place, and acts as a free money manager, which enables you to track your spending, create a budget, and set up goals. Users are also able to track their spending, set up low balance alerts, and browse relevant financial products.
However, as noted in the first edition of our superior financial apps story, Mint has some room for improvement. These include Mint’s transaction features, which often incorrectly categorizes the user’s spending, requiring manual intervention.
Another is the synchronization flaws that plague Mint, disrupting the user experience. Originally, Mint worked with a financial data aggregator called Yodlee, which enabled Mint to grab updated account details automatically every time a user visited their site.
However, in 2009, Intuit, the maker of Quicken, a desktop personal finance program, purchased Mint. The company stopped using Yodlee as their data provider and used Intuit instead. Since then, users have reported issues with Mint, such as having to manually repair broken connections with bank or credit card accounts. As Mint improves its app experience, there are a few alternatives that may fit your needs just as well.
Similar to Mint, Check, formerly known as Pageonce, is a free app that helps you stay on top of your bills and money. The difference between the two is that Check is more mobile-friendly and technically sound.
Check works on multiple devices, including the Web, iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, and Blackberry. It requires users to supply the app with the login passwords for financial accounts and household expenses — cable, electric, gas, and phone bills. The application then creates a dashboard in which all your finances are summarized in one easy-to-read overview.
From that point, users can click any section to get more in-depth information, and check the balances of their individual checking, savings, and credit card accounts. Bills are a snap to see and pay (right from within the app). Additionally, Check also shows the balance of investment accounts, such as an IRA or 401(k).
Lastly, it offers financial deals tailored around a user’s unique financial situation. Just like Mint, Check sends reminders for upcoming bill payments, offers tools to track and organize spending, and comes with a cool “file cabinet” feature that holds copies of past bank statements and utility bills.
The most noteworthy feature that sets Check apart from Mint is the fact that users have a more seamless experience when linking to their financial accounts.
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