I’ve been using Cha-Ching on the Mac for about a year now. While Cha-Ching is not perfect, it fits the majority of my money management needs. When I heard Midnight Apps was developing Cha-Ching for iPhone, I was very excited about the possibilities. After beta testing the application for a month or so, Cha-Ching for iPhone (iTunes link) has finally hit the App Store.
While Cha-Ching for iPhone is a completely stand alone application, the real power of the application lies in the integration it has with the desktop application. My review will concentrate more with the total Cha-Ching package (iPhone and Mac) than just the iPhone application by itself.
Once you have data in the desktop application or the iPhone application, you can begin using them together. To sync your data open both the iPhone application and desktop application. Go to Settings in the iPhone application and then hit Sync. Once you touch Sync, you’ll get the below screen telling you how to proceed with the sync on your Mac.
Currently everything is synced between both applications except for Budgets. Why? The budgeting function is being overhauled in the desktop application so right now they aren’t compatible. The budgeting function is a critical feature of any money management application so I hope the feature will be working within the next few beta releases of the desktop application.
Entering transactions on the iPhone application is a breeze. After hitting the New Transaction button, choose from a payee or add a new one. Once the payee is chosen, just enter in the amount and choose Income or Expense and click done. It takes just 3 taps to enter a new transaction!
Cha-Ching for iPhone allows you to schedule transactions, create new accounts, add notes to transactions, password protect the application, is location aware, and much more. Cha-Ching for iPhone currently costs $2.99 and requires iPhone software 2.2.1.
The verdict: Cha-Ching for iPhone is a winner. The application itself is gorgeous, intuitive, and features killer syncing with the desktop application. The ease of use is incredible. In fact, I actually prefer to enter transactions on the iPhone vs. the desktop application because the iPhone application is that easy to use. Currently the only downside is the lack of budget support with the desktop application. The budget feature is currently being worked on so it’s only a matter of time before that downside is erased. In short, Cha-Ching is the preferred method to track my family finances.