App Review: Qapital

Qapital is an app that helps users achieve financial goals via setting rules on themselves.

There are some fun rules that could be set. For example, round up very purchase to the nearest $2 and save the difference. Or Spend less than $30 at Fresh & Co during a single week and save the difference. Basically the cool thing is that it lets users see the money they save immediately after they follow the rules.

Its business model is similar to Digit that is to generate revenue via creating a saving account for users and keeping the money saved by users.

In addition, like Mint, it requires the online banking user name and password. The user interface is nice and simple, which is important for financial apps.


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  • mid 30s (M)
  • lives with gf in manhattan with pet
  • international student 
  • was working full time
  • good at managing finances: lives frugally, good financial habits


  • late 20s (F)
  • freelance designer (for $)
  • artist in resident (not for $)
  • credit card debt
  • starting to look for full time work


  • late 20s (F)
  • freelance designer/ITP resident
  • no debt
  • starting to save


  • late 20s (F)
  • installation artist/performer/freelancer (2-3 projects at a time, 3 mo each)
  • “worst person to talk about this stuff” 
  • has a lot of debt: getting nervous talking about this
  • a lot of uncertainties: just planning next 1-2 months (want to plan long term)
  • after graduating: paying off student loan
  • rent/food 


  • 30s (M)
  • graduated 2 yrs ago
  • startup experience
  • trade stocks 
  • lives in Manhattan with pet
  • has multiple accounts: personal (multiple credit cards), business, stocks


Financial management (currently)



Financial goals

Specific to freelancers

Specific to students

Specific to international students


Review: Mint App

I downloaded Mint two weeks ago. It was dumb at the beginning because all I could do was to provide my online banking information (username, password etc.) and see an empty transaction list.

I didn’t open the app until a week later. I saw a lot more transaction items there. But tons of them were marked uncategorized. It felt boring again because I could have seen the same thing in my online banking page.

It was not until yesterday that I found it interesting. I guess it’s because now I can see more categorized items. Not only does it provide the category info, but it also gives me an overview of my budget. I was shocked at the beginning to see the exact budgets for each category. I soon realized that the number must be generated based on my past.

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It’s good to see the pattern of how i spend the money. But still, I am not motivated enough to manually categorize those items that are uncategorized. Also, items marked as “Shopping” doesn’t make sense either because it didn’t say anything about what I bought.

Overall, I think Mint is a good app. I would see myself check it at least once a week.

Market research

total market

  • personal financial management app users:  12,816,140 users
  • Mobile Banking, Personal Finance, Personal Investing and Wealth Management. Your request fits under the Personal Finance category which includes: “Digital capabilities for tracking spend and income, along with budgeting.” 
target market
  • critical mass of freelancers
  • graduating students
There is also a broader market of daily money managers, CPAs, bookkeepers, private banks and others (several thousand professionals) that will manage your finances for you if you are so inclined.  The state of Massachusetts will even provide personal bookkeeping services to you if you are elderly and physically are unable on your own.
1. 87% of U.S. adults have a mobile phone.
2. 39% of adults with both mobile phones and bank accounts reported using mobile banking.
3. 22% of all mobile phone owners reported having made a mobile payment in the 12 months prior to the survey


  • mint/intuit
  • 1-2 million active users
  • people complain about bad categorization
  • troops (for Salesforce)
  • robinhood
  • expensify
  • quickbooks
  • freshbooks
  • level
  • acorn
  • goodbudget
  • wally
  • learnvest
  • quicken
  • CashPath Financial
  • Debitize 
  • Milestone
  • YNAB
Best for Individuals:
  • Mint (Lirong, Jia)
Best for Small Businesses: