Expensify Lite is now Expensify!

Tom Jacobs —  April 11, 2012 — 10 Comments

Do you use our iPhone app?

If so, then we have big news for you. You might be aware that we have another iPhone app in the App Store – “Expensify Lite”. Today, we’re renaming this Expensify Lite app to be just “Expensify” – because it’s now our main iPhone app.

If you use our old tab-based iPhone app, we recommend downloading this new Expensify app. Just go to the App Store on your iPhone, search for “Expensify”, and install. It does everything the old app does, plus a bunch more things like mileage, and receipt reporting + commenting on upload.

Our old iPhone/iPad app is now called “Expensify for iPad”.

So now the apps are called:


Expensify for iPad

The old tab-based app will remain as our iPad app until we add iPad support to our new app, at which point we’ll upgrade the old app to be the new one. So in a few months both listings in the App Store will be our new app, but you can jump over to the new app right now by downloading “Expensify” today.


Q: Why rewrite the app?

A: The new app was designed to streamline what we realized were by far the most common actions: scanning receipts and logging expenses while on the road.  It still does everything the old app does, along with a whole lot more.

Q: Why the new look?

A: Visual design is a tricky topic.  The main reason it looks so different is because the new app is built atop a cross-platform layer — it still uses native iPhone controls (and thus still has native performance), but doesn’t necessarily obey all the iPhone conventions.  The upside is it is more similar to our website and more consistent across platforms, at the downside of not feeling optimized for any platform in particular.  We’ll be adding in more platform-specific flair over time, but right now the feedback we’ve received has overwhelmingly encouraged us to just focus on getting the functionality right first.

10 responses to Expensify Lite is now Expensify!


    Hi there, I have been using Expensify for months and find it very useful to me. Once I noticed the update I immeidately switch over to the new iphone version app. A couple feedbacks:

    I am no longer able to “slide to delete” the entries (or I can’t do it right). It’s important to me as occasionally, probably due to my 3G connection or some sort, there will be double entries when the app is uploading my entry, and I need to delete one of them. (the double entries is another problem itself, but I am assuming it is because of my connection rather than the app)

    And about the UI, I guess it will take some time for me to like it. For now I am with the old UI more. And the options at the bottom (expenses, reports, settings) are not easy to “press”. I always have to press 2-3 times before I get it right.

    Keep up the good work!


    Cross platform sounds like a bad idea. I understand that it reduces your development costs, but having a clean interface that obeys standard platform controls is vital for mobile tools like this, where the most important thing is that it fits right in with how the phone is normally used. Even doing native + PhoneGap sounds like it will make this too uncomfortable to use…


    i might be missing how to do this but i can’t figure out how to associate a receipt i’ve previously captured to an expense that has been auto imported from my linked CC. It seems you can only take a new picture rather than select one already captured as you could in the earlier software.


    Hi Frank, have you used our SmartScan feature? This will the the link for you automatically. However, you’re right that we need to iron out how to do it manually on the new mobile app. (You can do it on the website, as well as on the old mobile app — we’ll resolve that gap soon.) Thanks for your patience!


    @Jason – Yep, great catches. We’re working on bridging the gap. Thanks!


    @Tom – Cross platform was a hard call. We initially started off pure native, but found it incredibly expensive and slow to keep them all up to date. That said, we’re not using anything like PhoneGap, which renders everything in the browser. We’re using our own platform that lets us get as native as we want, while still sharing all the very, very complex “behind the scenes” logic between platforms.

    For example, we recently made a change to combine the “Outbox” into the “Expenses” list. This change applies equally across all platforms, and because of this we were able to make that change once and it works across all platforms. Basically, simple and new apps are easy to do native, but over time most of the work is boring platform-independent changes. So it ultimately comes down to native awesomeness versus the ability to quickly add new features, fix bugs, and improve usability. We’ve got a *lot* more planned, and over the lifetime of the project, we’re hoping this pays off. Like any hard decision, unfortunately we’ll never know for sure. But thanks for your patience!

    Over the lifetime of the project, most changes are actually not platform specific, so the intent is that


    I cannot figure out to change “miles” to “kilometer” or do I have to calculate how much I am reimbursed per miles instead of km.?


    @Per – Unfortunately we don’t have a KM option at this time. It’s coming before the end of the year. Thanks for your patience!


    New app does not work…can’t get it to show competed report…not at all intuitive. Will most likely move our corporate business elsewhere. Before you take it upon youselves to change an app used by many think about running a test and checking with your users. You now have an expense report that SUCKS. Reinstate the original and do it NOW!


    @Steven – Just following up on our email chain. Thanks for the feedback; we’ve definitely got work to do on the new app. However, as discussed the old app is still available, and will remain available until all these issues are sorted out and the new app is comprehensively better. Thanks for your patience!

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