Monday, August 14, 2006

Quicken 2007 update - a quick review

I've loaded Quicken 2007.

Here are the most important points:

  1. colors and motifs are different - basic functionality is the same - nothing revolutionary
  2. monthly money in, out and what's left over are right there - in your face
  3. enhanced download functionality is allegedly there, but I haven't tried using it - includes support for new multi-factor systems (systems that ask for more info than just your user id and password)
  4. quicken is excessively obnoxious in its push for add-on sales. premium services you have to pay for such as: quicken bill pay (unnecessary for many of the institutions they recommend it - as most of the banks offer free bill pay via quicken already), quicken on-line backup, turbotax, etc.... They should really tone it down.
  5. better looking quick reports and reports access
  6. ability to use quicken while it downloads data
  7. The analysis tabs for different types of accounts (cash flow, investment) seem a bit better and clearer

Those are my most immediate reactions.

The conversion of my existing datafiles went smoothly and without much problem.

I'm interested at looking at the following features in the future:

  1. networth reporting
  2. budgetary reporting (first glimpse seems better)
  3. analysis: retirement planning
  4. exploring the one click update options - especially for institutions that don't download directly into quicken
  5. cash flow planning functions
  6. investment reporting - see how I can clean up the ugly placeholders that destroy quickens ability to produce accurate financial reports

Problems still there:

My year to date budget report included transfers to savings accounts as expenses, which screwed up the bugdetting report; i.e. my budget wasn't -$50k if you figured I save $60k.

More detailed reviews to come later.




Anonymous said...

Quicken 2006 Premier Home and Business (really: Intuit in all its manifestations) has just about run its course with me. Q2006 will be my last version of any Intuit product. I have been a Quicken user since about 1995. Q2006 is the last application that runs on Windows that I still depend upon. I have a Linux machine running GNUCash in parallel that is giving me almost everything I get from Quicken; what's missing I can do without. By year end, I should have made the break from any Microsoft OS or application.

I suggest you do too!

Intuit seems to be addicted to the CodeBloat school of application design. Frankly, there was little wrong with Quicken 2002. Just about everything added after that was eye candy. The advertizing became ever more aggressive and bothersome.

Worse, their CodeBloat also introduced a rash of bugs at each release. I skipped every other release both to save the bucks and to avoid a new set of bugs. I only updated then when my financial institutions insisted that I do (probably something to do with changes to the OFX protocol).

Still, after all these years, they still can't seem to get the concept of double-entry book keeping correct. You'd think they'd learn. ... Oh, for sub-accunts to handle accumulated depreciation of assets! ... but, I digress.

Anyway, run don't walk away from Quicken. You'll be glad you did in the long run.

Anonymous said...

I recently switched from Money 2006 to Quicken 2007. Basically, both programs are pretty bad, but for the most part, are your only options.

Money 2006 frustrated me with its incredibly slow performance, some odd business categroy tracking (ie, it would trend out a lot of my expenses automatically adding it to my cash forecast), and the way it handled dates with online bill pay screwed with my budget reports. Money also blew it with breaking MSN BillPay integration and Pocket Money support mid-year with a "have to wait for Money 2007" response.

Quicken 2007 is a lot faster and gives me more control on my budget, but the budget seems very separated from everything else, as the cash forecast doesn't account for my random dining/grocery expenses.

Want to look at some other services like Yodlee, but it seems for 2007, Quicken is the lesser of two evils. Best of luck to you!