The excellent You Need A Budget for iPhone (free) (or YNAB to its friends!) just got a hefty redesign for iOS 7, and it’s rather lovely.
The new look is a bit of a departure from the look of the main desktop app (for Mac and PC) but it fits in a lot better with the simpler, almost minimalist look of iOS 7 and actually makes several elements much clearer and easier to manage, especially when entering ‘splits’ or when picking a Payee based on your location. A particularly nice new touch is a pop-up update of the ‘before’ and ‘after’ totals of a budget category when you add a transaction, making it even easier to keep up-to-date with the month’s spending.
As the App Store description page points out, YNAB for iPhone is a companion app for entering transactions on the go and keeping an eye on your running budget totals but it requires the full Mac/PC app to be of any use. It doesn’t have any budget-managing options – though I hear they’re working on a standalone iPad app that will meet that need – but your budget is available to view, however. It syncs over from the desktop via Dropbox and you tap your on-the-go transactions into the app as they occur. Of course, you don’t necessarily need the iPhone app, you could just import a downloaded statement to the desktop app periodically, but I find that makes it harder to keep on top of your budgeting day-to-day.
So overall a great-looking update with some welcome new features. However, a couple of old features seem to have been lost including the ‘Favourites’ tab for quickly selecting regularly-used Categories and Payees.
According to the developer the autocomplete for Category and location-based Payee ultimately do the same job and for the most part I expect that’s probably the case but for me the Favourites filter was quicker and easier than relying on Autocomplete, narrowing dozens of budget categories down to the four or five I only ever needed on my phone whenever I had to manually enter a category or change the one Autocomplete entered.
They’ve also made a Search function more accessible but I found that tapping to activate it, then typing, then tapping the results was all more faff than using the old Favourites tabBut hey, not the end of the world! 😉
So in summary – a largely welcome update, with a couple of niggles I’ll just have to get used to.
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You Need A Budget is a fantastic Mac/PC personal budgeting app and I highly recommend you check it out if you’re looking for an intuitive, effective way to manage your household income or even a small business.
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