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Are financial apps worth using them?

Updated: Apr 30

The author Satu Kauppinen of the article:" Are financial apps worth using them?"

Publication date: 21.09.2023

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It is shown that personal finance smartphone apps improve financial knowledge, skills, attitudes, and motivation. In fact, these apps increase self-confidence in financial decision-making. In addition, user engagement could be improved by targeting users with specific problems.

How do finance apps work?

Finance apps are made to help people and expense tracking can be easy. There is a possibility to categorise personal expenses. In particular, it helps to follow where to spend money and where not. With finance apps people can create budgets and set limits for spending money. So, apps can track spending and create warnings about exceeding the budget.

Financial goals

Financial goals

Many finance apps allow a person to set financial goals, for example for buying a house. Modern finance apps can be connected to bank and credit card accounts, automatically improving transactions. This reduces the manual effort required to keep financial records up to date.

Data and personal information

Finance apps keep data and personal information safe. Moreover, there can be a possibility to share information with family or partner. In case you are sharing expenses with someone, some apps make it easy to split bills.

Financial Apps: what to be careful with

Be careful of fake apps or hacker

There are some cons when it comes to using finance apps. You should keep in mind that there are many fake apps and be careful which apps you use. After downloading an app, you need to protect your personal information. This is because hackers are becoming more talented every day and try to make new scams to hack people’s accounts.

Imagine the situation that you lost your phone, or it got stolen. If you have a lot of personal data in your phone, it is more likely that your account gets hacked. For example, you may lose your property, or your identity could get stolen.

Can finance be fun?

Gamification is seen as a useful tool as it can improve user engagement and make using finance apps more fun. Studies show that gamifying apps effectively fulfils users’ needs for competence and independence.

This, in turn, boosts their self-driven motivation to engage with these apps. As a result, it leads users to feel that apps are user-friendly, valuable and leads to positive overall sentiment. Studies also show that there is a direct connection between users’ attitudes towards finance apps and their intention to utilise them.

Popular finance apps

There are many different finance apps with different services. Before downloading an app, it is recommended to find out what app would best suit your own needs. Here are some examples about popular finance apps:

  • Mint is totally free and shows your bills, balance and credit score under one platform.

  • YNAB helps to learn money management and budgeting. Users have an opportunity to try the app for free. After that, you need to pay $84/year or $7/month.

  • Qapital makes saving easy. They offer a free trial and after that it costs $3-$6/month.

  • Pocket Guard offers simply budgeting. Offers free basic features. If the basic features are not enough, you can try Pocket Guard Plus which costs $7.99/month or $34.99/year.

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