Technology is a pretty amazing thing. It has the ability to make our lives easier and more complicated at the same time. Ask any parent with a teenager on social media.
The recently released Apple Watch has certainly lifted the technology bar in terms of what you can now do directly from your wrist. The days of glancing at your wrist to only get the time are a thing of the past, especially when it comes to managing your finances. There are some pretty amazing Apple Watch apps out there, many of which are free, that can help you save and manage your money. Here are the eight apps worth knowing about.
1. Mint for Apple Watch
Cost: Free on iTunes
The folks at Mint.com have entered the smart watch market by releasing a Mint appdesigned specifically for the Apple Watch. Once you pair your watch with your iPhone, the app lets you set up your monthly budget and helps keep your spending in check. You can review your day-to-day spending directly on your watch face and quickly glance at how much discretionary spending money you have left.
2. Daily Bread
Cost: $1.99 on iTunes
The Daily Bread Grocery app with Apple Watch integration, helps you save money by keeping your spending in check when at the grocery store. The app allows you to create smart shopping lists, and avoid expensive impulse purchases, by using a "predictive algorithm" which shows you the groceries you'll likely need based on your buying history. You can shop from your grocery list directly from your wrist and tell Siri to add specific items to your list without having to write anything down.
Cost: $3.99 on iTunes
The Pennies app with Apple watch integration is a very easy to use "everyday money tracker." The app lets you set-up specific budgets, both recurring and one-offs, and allows you to track your spending when on-the-go via your smartphone or Apple Watch. For example, if you have a $200 monthly entertainment budget you can simply enter your "fun money" expenses and check your wrist to see how you are doing throughout the month. You can also set "Daily Targets" to track your spending today and see how it will affect your spending tomorrow. The app is a fantastic tool to not only keep your spending reigned in, but also provides a useful way to see where your money goes every month in an attempt to find your budget-busters.
Cost: $9.99 on iTunes
The popular iBank app now has Apple Watch integration that'll display budget and expense details directly on your watch. You can also get information on how your investments are currently performing. It doesn't stop there — you can dig even deeper and check your linked credit card and bank accounts via your "timepiece." For the $10 price tag, the app is by far the most expensive on my list, but you end up getting a lot of useful features for your money.
Cost: $0.99 on iTunes
Unspent for the Apple Watch is a great way to keep your spending in check. The app connects to your iPhone and allows you to create spending categories, both seasonal and every day, and then lets you enter new transactions directly from your wrist. You can then view a summary of what you have left to spend in each category. The beauty of the app is in its simplicity; no charts, no bank connections, and no decimal points. According to their website, "Unspent is for people who want to track spending balances, but don't want to overthink it."
6. MoneyWiz 2
Cost: $4.99 in iTunes
The MoneyWiz app has been around for iOS devices for some time now, but they just recently added Apple Watch integration that's pretty powerful. The app allows you to track your spending, manage your budget, and get bill pay reminders that'll make late fees a thing of the past. Almost all of this information is now just an arm's length away via your Apple Watch. The budgeting tools are very intuitive and easy to set up, and the money saved by avoiding late fees makes this app worth a look.
Cost: $4.99 in iTunes
The Chronicle app, with Apple Watch integration, allows you to track your spending, keep track of your monthly bills, and set-up bill reminders to make those costly late fees a thing of the past. The ease of use with the app, and how you can access your financial information with a glance at your wrist, makes it a winner. For example, you can immediately see what bill is due next along with a chronological list of all your bills that are coming due. The app saves you money by helping you avoid late fees and documents your spending so you can keep your monthly budget on track.
8. Gas Guru
Cost: Free in iTunes
The Gas Guru app is free on iTunes and helps you locate the cheapest gas in your vicinity. To the excitement of many, the app has recently been integrated for use on the Apple Watch. Your watch display will show you the cheapest gas stations around you based on the grade of gas you select, and give you the address of the station and how far you are from it. While the GasBuddy app has been a long-time favorite among the frugal sect, Gas Guru takes it to a whole new level by letting you use it directly from your wrist.
While many of these apps are available to anyone with a smartphone, the Apple Watch integration is pretty cool, and quite handy. With that said, the hefty price tag of an Apple Watch makes it a hard to justify purchase. But if you're an Apple junkie and already own an Apple Watch, these apps are definitely worth a look.