Most of us have at least one weakness that drains the money quickly from your bank account. In today's world with marketing campaigns in your face and payment as easy as tapping your phone, one can find themselves spending way more than they can afford. Imagine if we had someone on our side to help us with finanancial responsibility and discourage us from our worst spending habits. Meet PennyWise, your virtual penny pinching financial advisor in the form of a mobile app that will you develop healthy shopping habits, lower your debt. Penny will constantly remind you of where you are and where you want to be, and will even point you in the direction of good deals and discounts when you are 'financially fit' to shop!
What it does
PennyWise allows the user to create a detailed budget including many categories such as groceries, eating out, alcohol, weed(we don't judge), entertainment, subscriptions etc. After you have created a reasonable budget, the app analyzes your credit card payment history, and identifies your spending patterns, hot shopping locations, and your spending weaknesses. Using this info and location tracking, whenever you find yourself in a store, restaurant, nightclub that you shouldn't be in (because you have little or no money left allotted for that expense), Penny will give you a call and remind you of your limits and will even suggest cheaper alternatives. In the event that you are well within your budget, Penny will notify you of discounts in your immediate location by mining the discounts and promotions tab in your gmail. As you use the app you can see how much money you have left for each month and Penny will be the wise reminder to save your more than a penny.
How we built it
We built Penny as Hybrid Mobile/Native Web app. We used web technologies like AngularJS, HTML and CSS for the front end. For back end we used a combination of Node.js and firebase. We utilized the capitol one's Nessie API, Twillio's API and Gmail API.
Challenges we ran into
We underestimated how difficult it would be to integrate the project within the time frame and made many novice assumptions about our tech stack. We eventually we had to change both front end and back end technologies and re do our product.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We built a platform that could potentially save a lot of people a lot of money and eventually help them plan and spend their money wisely.
What we learned
Json parsing, Node js, angular js, Capitol One API, TWILIO API, Amazon RDB, Firebase and lots of technology.
What's next for Penny-wise
We are planning to integrate Penny-wise with Gmail promotions to message/call about the discounts nearby. Add functionality to encourage responsible spending when below the budget. Move to amazon web services eventually. Add Penny-wise buddy to help you achieve your financial goals faster and more fun.