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May 28

iBank 3.5.6
The leading Mac-only alternative to Quicken.
Developer Interview below!
iBank will be available May 29th and 30th here on the macZOT home page.
AND on May 31 via a Special Offer link here.

Normally: $59.99

ZOT Price: $37.99

Click to MacZOT Try Now  



Finally, the Mac OS X personal finance manager you’ve been waiting for. We’ve tried the competition, we’ve listened to our users and we’ve delivered the best money management app available.

iBank 3 is designed to manage bank accounts, credit cards, loans and investments; analyze income and expenses with live updating charts; and plan your financial future with budgeting and forecasting. Along with iBank Mobile (the new iPhone app for transaction entry and desktop syncing on the go) and Direct Connect for online accounts, iBank 3 is a robust financial application able to meet the needs of the casual consumer to online investor.

What’s New?

Direct Downloads. iBank can now connect to your bank "behind the scenes" and import your data for you.* No more going to websites, logging in, going to the correct page, setting date parameters, etc; now it just happens, automatically. This was our most requested feature and we’ve delivered.

*Your bank must support the OFX protocol specifications. If you bank doesn’t support it correctly or at all, you may still need to log in to a website to download transactions.

Interactive Graphs. Graphs in iBank have received a complete overhaul. Now utilizing the power of Core Animation, you can click on pie graph slices to see sub-category totals or even "flip" the slices to see a list of the transactions making up that slice. While we certainly wanted to make the graphs look slick, they are now more functional and more enjoyable to use.

iBank now comes loaded with high resolution images for the most popular categories. These images are then used when making charts or viewing graphs so you can quickly see which part of a graph belongs to which category. You can also change the images to match your own preferences or add images to your own custom categories.

With iBank Mobile (available separately via the App Store), we deliver a solution for editing your transactions on the road, using your iPhone or iPod Touch. You can view historical transaction, or create and edit new ones while you’re on the go. Then sync your data to iBank on your desktop, using Wi-Fi, MobileMe (membership required), or any webDAV server.

Cover Flow for Transactions. Ever wanted to see your transactions outside of a list? Enter Cover Flow on iBank: you can view, edit, and flip through your transactions while seeing how you spent (or earned) your money with gorgeous category images (see above). A graph along the bottom shows your account balance through time; click anywhere in the graph to jump to that transaction.

Loan Management. Easily manage loans and other debt with scheduled payment plans.

Smart Portfolios. Use a smart portfolio to summarize your investments for any accounts or securities. Want a portfolio to represent your Roth IRA, but not your personal investment account? No problem. Just want to see how your Apple stock is doing since a specified date or from a specified account? No problem.

Check Your Stocks on the Road. Upload your portfolios to your MobileMe account from iBank and view your securities’ performance from any web browser (including your iPhone and iPod Touch, of course).

Stock Performance Graph. Ever wonder how your stock picks stack up against the S&P 500 or NASDAQ, even after adjusted for dividend payouts? With the new performance graph in iBank you can select any securities to graph against each other to see how they compare, through time, adjusted for splits and dividends.

More Drag and Drop. Now to make a scheduled transaction you can just drag any transaction onto the "Scheduled Transactions" item in the source list. Want to add a category to a report? Just drag and drop it! Trying to reconcile a statement? Just drag and drop missing transactions into the statement until it is balanced.

Tax Support. Export your tax records to TurboTax and other tax software, plus assign tax numbers to your categories for easy tracking.

Standard Reports. Easily compare assets and liabilities with a Balance Sheet or check the performance of your investments with Capital Gains and ROI Reports.

System Requirements:
Mac OS X 10.5 or higher
512MB RAM/30MB free space
1024×640 screen resolution

Supported languages: English, French, and more coming soon!

Click to Developer’s Site for more info.

Zot interview with Ian Gillespie

Developer of iBank + iBiz, and President of IGG Software, LLC.

Why did you create iBank? What need were you trying to satisfy?

I was a Mac user, of course, and I saw the need for a solid, truly Mac-based app that offered as many of the features of Quicken as was practical. The first version of iBank came out in 2004, and it was fairly rudimentary compared to how far it’s come. iBank now features pretty robust investment tracking, direct downloads, and import and export capabilities. As it turns out, the latest version of Quicken seems to have taken a big step backwards lately in terms of functionality. People waited years for it, and it doesn’t even export to Intuit’s own TurboTax! It doesn’t do check printing or a lot of other things that earlier versions did, and that’s been driving a lot of users to iBank. So for people tracking their personal finances on a Mac – and there are a lot of us – iBank is now probably the most complete Mac finance solution available.


What’s the most unique, useful feature of your product?

iBank is pretty full-featured, but we feel like some of the most important things that differentiate iBank aren’t part of the product itself. For instance, it’s hard to get help with a lot of technology products, so we make sure we’ve got a killer support team. The quality of help they provide has created a lot of customer loyalty. Along the same lines: we talk to, and listen to, and respond to our users. Bug fixes, changes to the user interface, new feature development, a transparent development process, regular updates… all of those things are customer-driven with iBank. It seems like an obvious way to do business, but I’m often surprised at how many companies don’t get that right.


What features should a prospective buyer look into during a trial of your product?

Everyone comes to iBank with a different set of goals or priorities. But almost all of them start with the same steps: importing their Quicken account data, and downloading transactions from online accounts. Unfortunately, these are choke points: if they don’t work right, we can lose a sale. But I mention them because in nearly every case, there are things we can help users overcome if they don’t get their data to import correctly. Sometimes the problem is that a new user skips a step, but if the problem is on our end, or Quicken’s, we’ve usually encountered the issue and can help the customer with a solution. On the bank download side, it’s the same deal: not all banks support the direct download protocol, but we know how you can import transactions from nearly any bank or online account. And we want to get you going! Since we offer free support even for users in demo mode, we encourage people to bring their questions to us.


What’s your favorite Mac app out there from another developer? Why?

There are so many great apps, it’s not possible to pick a favorite. As a developer, I’m really enthusiastic about OS X, but that doesn’t count… and for instance, I’m pretty into photography, but I wouldn’t say I like PhotoShop or Aperture or iPhoto best. They all do different things, and do them really well, though I don’t think any of them are perfect either. Right now there’s a lot of excitement around iPhone apps and the iPad, and it’s easy to understand why. The mobility and simplicity of the iPhone platform is fantastic. But there’s still a crucial role for more demanding tools, like PhotoShop, or even iBank and iBiz, so I’m certainly not giving up on the desktop either.


What features would you like to add to your product that at this time seem improbable/impossible?

Some of the things people have been asking for in iBank, like improved charts, reports and budgeting, are right around the corner. So they’re hardly impossible, they’ve just taken a lot of resources to get right. We’ll also be working on something specific to the iPad in the near future, but that’s a function of resources as well.

Of all the feature requests we hear, the biggest is probably bill-pay. It was something people were used to in Quicken, and now that Quicken Essentials has eliminated that functionality, it creates an opportunity for iBank to capture customers for whom bill-pay is a dealmaker. Having said that, adding bill-pay is a huge undertaking. It involves a lot of back-end, third-party stuff that adds costs, complexity and potentially, security issues. For the end-user, it probably means that gaining access to bill-pay will entail monthly charges. We’ve also seen a mini-trend of banks disallowing bill-pay that originates from third-party apps like Quicken – some institutions have concluded that the most secure method for paying bills is for account holders to do so from within their own accounts.

So there are definitely some hurdles. We’re still weighing the extent to which iBank better serves customers by including bill-pay functionality, or the extent to which customers can live without it. For instance, you can already access your accounts via iBank’s built-in browser, pay your bills without leaving the app or incurring extra charges, and then reconcile the payment when you next download the transaction period including that charge. But for some customers, that’s not how they want it to work.

It’s not certain that we’ll add bill-pay to iBank any time soon, but we’re keeping an eye on it in a changing environment. Over the long run it feels inevitable. We’re pretty responsive to users, and certainly, there are enough users calling for it. Again, it will take up development resources and time, so it’s neither impossible nor improbable – just a matter of making it a priority.

Thanks Ian!

About IGG Software, LLC

In 2003, programmer Ian Gillespie launched IGG Software, LLC, in Southern California. He had one simple goal: to develop intuitive, yet powerful, personal and small business applications for Mac OS X.

Gillespie created his inaugural application, AtWork, while working on a doctorate in botany. The program took root as a tool by which Gillespie could track the hours he spent conducting rare and endangered plant surveys. But after posting the application online and selling his first copy on the first day (for $6.00), a business was born. AtWork evolved into iWork, which in turn was relaunched as iBiz in early 2005. Today, iBiz 4 is the simplest and best tool for Mac-based free-lancers, consultants and contract workers to track and invoice billable hours.

As iBiz developed, IGG also began to offer ever more powerful versions of iBank, the company’s flagship application for managing personal finances and small business accounts. iBank 2 emerged in January 2006 after being completely rewritten to take advantage of Mac OS 10.4, Tiger. Similarly, Gillespie introduced iBank 3 at Macworld 2008. This version, developed strictly for OS 10.5, was named a runner-up for Best Leopard Application in the 2007 Apple Design Awards. With major new features such as direct account downloads, iPhone sync, interactive graphs and loan management, iBank has become the leading money management application created exclusively for Mac users.

Since 2004, IGG Software has been based in Putney, Vermont, a vibrant small community in a state known for its environmentalism. As such, IGG is committed to supporting sustainable energy, obtaining all of its electricity from renewable sources through Green Mountain Power’s “Greener Mountain Power” program.

2 Responses to “iBank 3.5.6”

  1. pl_svn Says:

    … ok, May 31 is here but… where’s the “Special Offer” link? :-/
    :-p

  2. wpadmin Says:

    Hi pl_svn -

    The Special Offer became an extension of the weekend offer.
    Same great deal!!!!

    Grab it while it’s hot!

    Mike Biskup
    macZOT