Last week, we learned from GeekWire that Google has applied for a patent on our bread and butter technology: tracking groups of bills split with friends. The patent application describes a system of shared balances and payments between friends in a group – exactly what Splitwise and some of our competitors have been doing publicly for years. Google currently has no group-splitting product, and one can only assume they are considering adding a splitting service to Google Wallet. (Google, if you want to integrate Splitwise with Wallet, reach out to us).
I’m going to kick off a multi-part series on US Census data by offering a totally free download, in XLS or CSV format, of something strangely hard-to-Google: the 2010 US Census population by Zip code (technically, by ZCTA). Splitwise is offering these files free of charge and in the public domain, and I can’t believe how many other sites are charging for them!
But the difficulty I had in creating this data set and using the US Census website has inspired me to write a bit more about how to use one of the world’s most interesting open data sources.
It’s my great pleasure to announce version 3 of Splitwise for iPhone and web, which Marshall has memorably code-named “Fat Rabbit.” This is a major new relaunch, which changes our look and feel and adds popularly requested features like expense search, offline mode, bill editing, and push notifications. Perhaps most notably, we’ve entered the world of “mobile payments” with iPhone payments via PayPal.
We have decided to relaunch Splitwise today, in spite of yesterday’s bombing of the Boston Marathon. We are deeply upset by the attack, and many dear friends of Splitwise were near the scene of the bombing or experienced a near miss. Our thoughts are out to anyone affected by the tragedy. In light of everything, we believe that the most ethical thing for Splitwise to do is to go ahead with business as usual.
After two long years of trying to figure out how to make money, Splitwise has finally settled on a sustainable business model that will enhance the user experience of our website and keep ourselves profitable into the future.
Charging money for payments? Lame. Advertisements? Meh. Premium features? What premium features?
To Splitwise fans using Windows Phone 7.5 or 8, the last few weeks have been really exciting. Personally, I got so excited I purchased a Lumia 620 off of eBay just so I could keep up with these two new 3rd party releases. It won’t be my primary phone, but the Metro UI is very nice.
A few days ago, Centwise (created by Kamran Ayub) released its first version for both Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8, making it the first third party app for long-time Windows Phone 7 fans! It’s a full featured app, with group support, simple IOUs, and lots of bells and whistles. Kamran is charging $1.29 to support his efforts, but it does have a free trial and a couple unique features I really like – including the sweet calculator-within-the-add bill flow pictured at right. Check out the full Centwise feature set here.
Miron has been keeping the awesome updates coming at free Splittr. The 1.1 release, which hit the app store yesterday, adds totally full-featured group support, so you can see all the expenses associated with a group, group balances, and repayment instructions. One neat idea is the ability to directly pin a group shortcut to the home screen. What a cool feature – I wish I had that on Android. I’m told a Windows Phone 7.5 version is submitted to the review queue as well. As of March 26th, Splittr now also supports Windows Phone 7.5, so all Windows Phone users should have two choices – a free and a paid app. Joy of joys!
Want Splitwise on Blackberry, Symbian, your toaster? Email email@example.com and we’d love to give you early API access. Personally, I can’t wait until we have an Arduino that creates Splitwise IOUs for the office coffee jar. 🙂
Splitwise is now completely back up, but went down for about eight hours this morning. We are so sorry for the downtime to all of the users who could not access their account during this time. No data was lost, and everything is totally back on line now. Continue reading Splitwise Back Up
We are so excited to announce that Miron Vranjes has developed the first Windows Phone 8 client for Splitwise, called Splittr. It’s free and awesome, so if you use Windows Phone 8, go grab it now!
For over a year, users have asked us “when are you going to support Windows Phone?” Miron stepped up and did it himself, using our open API. Splittr is a 3rd party app not developed by us, but it works with your existing Splitwise account and everything should more or less work with Splitwise as normal once you sign-in with Splitwise (just like a “Login With Facebook”). We like the UI he designed – it’s a very “Metro” look.
A few other notes:
Miron tells us a Windows Phone 7 version will also be out soon. For now, this is just for Windows Phone 8.
It has a tax/tip functionality that we don’t have yet – cool!
This is actually the 1.0.9 version. After a small update, the app now supports supports groups as well as friendships.
Users who have multiple groups will notice a missing feature – you will not be able to sort expenses/balances by that specific group, as you can in the website or native Splitwise apps. However, Splittr will tell you the group when you view a specific expense, and will let you select a group when you add one.
We’ve been dying to improve our “Divide A Bill” dialog box for months, and a preliminary version is finally ready! Take a look below, and please give us feedback or suggestions in the comments. We’ve been rolling it out slowly over the past few days, and all users will have it by early next week.
The form has been completely redesigned from scratch, with two killer new features.
You can add people into the “With’ field just like an email – without tons of clicking. SO much easier, and much more like the iPhone and Android apps.
Adding new people will automatically add them into the expense without clearing your existing data (a big complaint in the old version).