How Quicken Beat Out MS Money is Still Beyond Me:

by on April 21st, 2011

This is a syndicated blog post by Randomwok. The Beat The GMAT editorial staff has left this post in its raw (and entertaining) form.

I recently got an upgrade notice from Quicken, with an offer to purchase the 2011 edition of their software at a discounted price.  Since I recently switched to Quicken 2010 from MS Money Plus, and still have two years left before my online connectivity runs out, I wasn’t about to give Intuit more of my money, for what was essentially the same product I already purchased with a new coat of paint.

I decided to humor myself and click on the new features link anyway, to see what they were offering.  In reviewing these “new features” for Quicken 2011, I was shocked to see how many of these features were already available in Microsoft Money Plus, a product released over three years ago.  This doesn’t bode well for Quicken customers, considering that it’s 2011 and Intuit is still trying to catch up to Money’s functionality.  And because it’s now a monopolized market with Money gone, I’m not sure Intuit will have much incentive to upgrade their software any faster.

3 comments

  • Hi Mark,

    It's not about how many features a product has. But rather how easy it is for users to do the most critical tasks. I haven't checked out MS Money, but I always thought that Quicken suffered from feature bloat - Intuit kept adding new features to a very mature product every year to try to get people to upgrade. An even more interesting story is how Mint beat Quicken. Mint always had far fewer features than Quicken, but using Mint was super easy. And so Intuit bought Mint for $170 mil and now the people from Mint are leading Intuit's consumer-oriented businesses.

    FYI, Quicken is actually a really small part of Intuit's biz now. When I first joined Intuit, I read their annual report and was totally surprised to learn that Quicken's revenue only accounted for around 5% of the whole company.

    In Microsoft's case, my guess is that they gave up with MS Money because there isn't much money in that category anymore and unseating an entrenched/incumbent market leader is really hard.

  • Why aren't you using mint.com?

  • I think Mint is a great idea, and a lot of my friends use it. But there are two reasons why I personally choose not to:

    1. Security - Based on what I've heard, I know Mint uses a very secure system, but hackers have a tendency to "find a way." At the end of the day, no system is fully secure. And if I ever get one of those fateful emails that say "oops your info has been compromised," I like the security that not all my eggs are in one basket.

    2. Customization - Again, based on anecdotes and not actual usage, but I've heard that Mint is difficult to customize. Within Quicken I create additional ledgers to track my business expenses and 401K contributions. I don't think you can do that with Mint.

    Anyway, it's interesting how much less I like using personal finance software these days, knowing that I'm about to go $150,000 into debt. ;)

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