BillMinder in Review – Managing Your IOU’s Is As Easy As ABC!
Finance apps can be lifesavers. They help you track expenses, balance your budget, even send or receive money. We all pay bills, and having an app that helps show you when and how much you need to be paying can take the stress out of it all. Return7 answers your needs with a stylish application that’s rich in features and makes use of the enhanced features of the latest iPhone OS.
BillMinder is a great app for anyone who has lots of bills and hates trying to keep track of them all. The interface is simple to read but definitely not simple in features. Your main screen is a view of a calendar with your navigation and options below.
While viewing the calendar, you have the option of viewing the bills you have yet to pay, ones already paid, or both. Visually, “owed” bills are marked by a red square, while “paid” bills are marked in green. At the bottom of the calendar is a total of all the money that you are paying out for that month.
Another viewing mode for the main page shows you the bills for that month in list form which you can select beside the icon for the month/year header.
Adding bills to the app is fairly straightforward, but first, you must add your various “collectors”. To do this just select the option from the links at the bottom and you will be brought to the collectors screen. From here you have the option to either add a collector or add a category. Categories are there to help sort all your collectors into similar groups. When you view the main calendar page there is another option that allows you to show only bills from a certain category.
To add a collector just enter their name. Select a category for filing (if applicable) and then enter any other information you have (e.g. phone number, website). Once saved they will show up as a collector which you can choose when you enter in your bills.
To add your bills you can either select the “+” symbol or click on a date from the calendar. First you select the collector from the available names, OR if you forgot to add someone, you can do so right from that screen. Other required fields are the due date and the amount. An extra option available here, is to switch a bill to recurring status. Doing so will bring up another box where you select the frequency in which it will occur. When you have made a payment, you can enter the amount, then when paid, set it to “paid”. For automatic bills, you will need to change the ‘paid’ option to automatically display after a certain date. Lastly, you also have spaces to enter in your account numbers and confirmation numbers if you have them.
After you have entered all of your bills, the last thing you’ll want is to lose all that info. Thankfully BillMinder has a backup option. Selecting “Backup”, you simply flip the switch to enable web a server. You will then be able to connect via your computer to save any backups or restore from a backup if needed. Another option available is to “export” the data. Selecting that option will open a menu for you to select the date range that you want to grab and export. Once you have chosen your dates, the program takes the data you selected, saves it in the popular CSV format and appends it to an email. You just enter in who to send it too and anything else you wanted to add to the body of the email and send it off.
Last but certainly not least, are the app’s available settings. Simple alerts are available in the form of a badge on the app icon as well as a message that pops to tell you how many pending/past due bills you have. The length of time the app looks ahead is also available from this screen. You can also set a pass code to keep all your data private. It’s just a matter of turning the feature on and the entering/confirming the pass you choose.
In an interesting move, Return7 have also included the ability to integrate the app with Catamount Softwares PocketMoney, a personal finance manager. Doing this will help you keep track of both your bills and what needs to be paid, along side with all your accounts and the money you would be using to pay those bills. By adding this feature Return7 is making the task of keeping your personal finances in check and thus, even more simple.
The last feature that I have to mention is probably the most important feature in my opinion. Not being satisfied with just reminders for bills, Return7 has also included the ability to have push notifications for the app, for an extremely low cost.
I’ve mentioned it before but the simple fact is that push notifications cost money. They require the developer to manage a server for the app at their own expense. Return7 has tried to counter this cost by asking for a $0.99 payment once a year. They have made sure to point out that it is also not auto-renewing. So next year you aren’t surprised with a purchase that at that point you probably wouldn’t remember.
This is the first app that I have had the chance to view that makes us of the ability to do in app purchases. I was quite surprised at how easy it seemed and having it go through your existing iTunes account definitely makes you feel a little more secure in your purchase.
BillMinder does an amazing job at helping you keep track of your bills. After only a few days of adding my bills and upcoming expenses I already have a better idea of where I sit financially. If your the type of person that either has a lot of bills to manage or just doesn’t want to forget them, then this app is definitely for you.
|Title:||BillMinder with Push Notifications (Version 1.6)||Developer:||Return7|
|Price:||$1.99 (Currently on Sale!)||App Size:||0.6 MB|