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YNAB moving to a subscription model

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You Need a Budget has been recommended before on DonationCoder. I noticed they changed their business model from $40 to buy the current version, to a subscription model where you pay $5 a month (or $50 a year).

I think one piece of sound advice if you are trying to get your financial situation under control, is to try to limit the number of monthly recurring subscription fees.

Also, I am not a fan of the move to having all your information in the cloud. I rather prefer to have my financial information on my own computer.

There is a long thread on their forum with people voicing their opinions about the change.

I understand them wanting to establish a regular revenue stream. But from my experience, most users aren't at all pleased with the "software as a service" concept. Especially if they're like me and prefer to own rather than rent whatever they're using.

I think YNAB (which I own and think highly of) is making a bit of a mistake with this move. The program pretty much is what it is. The philosophy and approach it teaches doesn't need updating. If anything it's just a nicely presented rework of some solid and classic financial advice. The program is simple and efficient - so it shouldn't require much if any updating to do its job. So I'm not sure what the additional value moving to a subscription revenue model is providing to their customer. Especially since so many people (myself included) are very uncomfortable having their finances stored anywhere other than on their own drive.

I wish them luck. But I'm afraid that unless they can hook up with some financial guru seminar or similar service, and bundle it in as an add-on service, it isn't going to fly.

The sad thing is that although there's a market for personal finance software, nobody seems to be interested in doing it. Because it's essentially a one-off sale. Most users of these packages aren't interested in new features. And without new features, there's no incentive to ever upgrade.

Intuit is looking for someone to take over Quicken right now. They've assured their customers that Intuit is going to make sure whoever takes over it's ongoing support and development will continue to keep Quicken going as a top notch desktop app.

And nobody with an ounce of brains believes Intuit for a single minute.

I'm sure Quicken will shortly be going the way of Microsoft Money, Andrew Tobias's Managing Your Money, and all those other nifty personal finance programs we used to know.

Someone said my views on the switch well:

I think it's the cost of a cup of coffee a month but getting water in the cup that is troublesome.

--- End quote ---

I don't mind having some things in the cloud.  But my financial information?  I want it in as few places as possible.  And with all that they have access to?

I'm not a glass half-full or half-empty kind of guy.  I just think that what they're serving is piss.

Thankfully, I have never gotten into using the mobile app, so as long as Air works on the latest and greatest operating system, I'm fine.

I'm starting to get myself in a bit of hot water lately but I don't wish any company "luck" without other things behind it.

I'm getting meta lately so of *any* category of software, for *financial* software devs to get all "I'm bored, we're low on funds, let's go all Saas because the cool kids are doing it" is ... NOT who I want anywhere near my money! It's close to the ONE category you can't do that on and I haven't even checked the six-plus sets of relevant accounting law.

You can play all those games with Gaming, Photo, Music, whatever applications, but when real money shows up beyond "a purchase" the rules change and all the cool kid tricks become illegal.

Illegal is a bit hyperbolic isn't it?  I don't think there are any legalities that cover this type of software that they might even run afoul of unless I'm misinformed?


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