While we’re nuts about the games, imaging apps and social media goodies that the Windows Phone Store has to offer, there’s plenty of practical apps available too.
Let’s face it, personal finance can sometimes seem a bit daunting. However, as anyone from the UK will tell you, if you look after the pennies the pounds will look after themselves. And once you have a handful of purpose-built budgeting apps and other monetary gizmos at your command – well, then managing your money is a lot more appealing and a lot easier. With this in mind, we’ve showcased our current top ten financial productivity tools. Start your Nokia Lumia’s downloading engine!
What Is It? A budgeting tool
Why We Love It? It’s a user-friendly way of charting your incomings and outgoings. Set your monthly budget and then log each outgoing and incoming sum (and categorize them too, if you like) and you’ll end up with an easy-to-read display of your monthly expenditure – you’ll see, quite literally, if you’re in the red, and you can compare each month with the next. Neat, convenient and no specialist knowledge is required.
Who It’s Perfect For: Anyone who wants a realistic overview of their spending
What Is It? A password-protected money management app
Why We Love It? Like myMoneyBook, this lets you log your expenditure and earnings, but it also links to a web interface and can be connected to your bank accounts. The downside is it’s only operational with US and Canadian financial institutions as of yet; but if you can use it, it’s excellent: it even gives you updates about your account balances right there on your Home Screen.
Who It’s Perfect For: US/Canadian folk who want a comprehensive overview of all their finances.
What Is It? An expenses-tracking photo app
Why We Love It? Well, we love photos and this is a really neat way of integrating the photographic capabilities of your phone with the urge to manage your money. Take a picture of your receipt, bill, price-tag or whatever other visual is to hand, and then when you have a chance, type the relevant figures into the box. It also brings up your monthly budget status as a Live Tile for quick reference.
Who It’s Perfect For: Money conscious shutterbugs
What Is It? A comprehensive budgeting tool
Why We Love It? It’s yet another money management app that allows you to record your expenses and earnings, but it’s a very ample one: you can set up things like repeating expenses, so you can get an idea about what next week/month/year will look like, move funds from one budget to the next and convert currencies. It’s free, but an in-app purchase will give you the ability to export your budget to various file formats. Overall, fantastic value, and the interface is very friendly to boot.
Who It’s Perfect For: people who want a one-stop financial shop
What Is It? A reminder app
Why We Love It? It’s a simple, handy addition to your portfolio of financial apps; rather than searching in a more complex app to find out when a bill is due, set up reminders here which you can colour-code, access and read quickly, and mark as paid. While we do like a one-size-fits-all app, this is very handy when you need a nudge to get a bill sorted, or to remind you that money will be leaving your account pronto.
Who It’s Perfect For: bill-conscious spenders
What Is It? A bill-paying app
Why We Love It? You can pay your bills right from your smartphone! Like Bill Reminder, this will notify you when a payment is due, but the difference is that you can pay the bill there and then without leaving the app. Handy! The catch is that again, it’s US-specific, and that the organizations in question need to have online payment enabled. Still, most companies are online these days, and we’ve got plenty of US-based WP users, so we think that quite a few of you will get a lot out of this app.
Who It’s Perfect For: US-based bill-payers.
What Is It? A car info extravaganza
Why We Love It? While you can use this app to demonstrate your love/obsession with your car in many ways (photo albums, event history), it’s also an excellent way to keep track of fuel expenditure as well as other car-related expenses, like tax, insurance and maintenance. As well as being able to track petrol use and mileage, you can see how your usage varies month on month, which can help with overall household money management.
Who It’s Perfect For: car aficionados.
What Is It? A stocks tracker for your phone
Why We Love It? There are several very good stocks analysis apps on the market, but we like this one because of the neat way it integrates market news (in a twitter-like feed) with the more fiddly details of the exchange. It presents complicated material in a clear way, it’s got Live Tile support for headline info, and multi-currency portfolio support for international traders. You can also export and import data so that you can link it up to other financial tools for further analysis.
Who It’s Perfect For: traders and dabblers in the stock market
What Is It? A digital receipt file
Why We Love It? Like Budget Buddy, it’s a way of digitizing receipts by photographing them, categorizing them and re-inputting the data. You can skip the photo stage if you like, and just type in directly. While it’s a more basic service in terms of its financial calculations than the aforementioned app, we like the fact that this one supports French and Chinese (Traditional and Simplified) as well as English, making it a more international-friendly option.
Who It’s Perfect For: International budgeters
What Is It? Ahem. A currency converter.
Why We Love It? Sometimes you don’t want a full financial breakdown, you just want to know what something would cost back at home so you know if your spending is way off the mark. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s free, it works offline and it supports 160 currencies and counting. Does absolutely exactly what it says on the tin, and we can’t argue with that. A very useful go-to resource when you’re abroad or shopping online in an international store.
Who It’s Perfect For: money-conscious travellers
We think these are the best of the bunch, but we’re always happy to be proven wrong. So, if you’re using some top notch, super duper money saving app we’ve missed we’d love to hear about it down below.
Image credit: epSos