Sometime back in the late Cretaceous period we announced that development had started on Bank Feeds. Since then, tectonic plates have shifted, civilisations have risen and fallen, and all the while, work has continued inexorably on Bank Feeds.
The year is now 2013 and the great news is the coming of Bank Feeds is now upon us. But is it such a big deal?
Yes, this is a big deal!!!
Bank Feeds automate the process of importing bank transactions from your bank into FreeAgent.
I agree with Roan - this is a big deal. We use FreeAgent for our business, and Xero Personal for our personal stuff. Xero recently added automated bank feeds for Xero Personal - they have had it for the main Xero product for a long time.
To say it makes a difference is an understatement: we use it now, rather than putting things off until later. We don't have to put a calendar reminder in to do imports before the bank removes the data. Throw in scheduled automated bank feeds (daily like FreeAgent, or even weekly) and a mobile app, and that would solve 80% of my problems with the UK personal banking system.
Which brings me to mobileAgent.
In the recent versions of mobileAgent, I now show the current bank account balances and the last 30 days of transactions, so you can see your up-to-date transactions on your iPhone.
Which, frankly, is pretty cool.
All you need to do - once the FreeAgent part is all setup and working - is open mobileAgent, hit Refresh (top right of the toolbar), wait bit for the download, and you are up to date!
If you consider this information to be especially sensitive, you can also set a pin number on mobileAgent, which requires you to enter it before you can open mobileAgent. It's at the bottom of the Setting screen.
Side note: mumble grumble I'm with a bank thats not supported by this yet - not FreeAgent's fault tho. I'd consider switching, but we might not be in the country for much longer, so it's not worth it. But Luke Redpath has a wee script which fixes that, but it does need manual execution. Some Ruby skills required however. I'll be trying this out shortly, I think.