FriendCash adds no ease to sharing expenses

Sep 28, 2010
Finance

Finance app FriendCash, new for iPhone and iPod Touch, is meant to make tracking and splitting group expenses easier, but overdesign and lack of options make this app one to avoid. From screenshots, FriendCash appears to be a simple answer to keeping track of money owed. But once you’ve made the dollar investment into the […]

Finance app FriendCash, new for iPhone and iPod Touch, is meant to make tracking and splitting group expenses easier, but overdesign and lack of options make this app one to avoid. From screenshots, FriendCash appears to be a simple answer to keeping track of money owed. But once you’ve made the dollar investment into the app, you’ll probably be disappointed to see how unintuitive FriendCash really is.

The first step in using FriendCash is to create an event. I’m not sure what the developer had in mind for this, perhaps vacation or the like, but I used rent for my test. Then you’ll see a screen where you can add friends (up to 80) who will owe you money. Using the plus sign at the bottom, you’ll be able to add a new expense, its date, any notes, the creditor and the debtors. Although FriendCash will automatically split costs with your debtors based on the number of shares you each owe, there’s no way to enter in your own options. For instance, my rent split is not 50-50, and the app gave me no way to indicate this aside from selecting two shares for myself (which resulted in a figure that isn’t what I pay, anyway).

Back on the main screen (there’s no easy-access Home button, so the deeper in app you go, the more screens you have to back out of), the Arrow tab at the bottom will display who owes whom what, in order for the cash to be balanced. FriendCash doesn’t have the interface to accept partial-payment information, nor was I able to easily mark a debt as paid and still have a record of it.

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FriendCash might look nice on the surface, but its convoluted interface will cause you frustration. I’ll be sticking with iPhone’s calculator to divvy up expenses.

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