Keeping Track of Home Finances with BlackBerry PlayBook

The featured image is sourced from Flickr.

RIM’s BlackBerry brand has become synonymous with business, being the first range of mobile devices to truly showcase the potential of email on-the-go. Unsurprising, then, that these BlackBerry PlayBook reviews note the company’s latest tablet is suitably equipped for use in professional environments: there’s the usual onboard support for presentations, spreadsheets and documents, and the essential email and calendar apps.

But RIM has also responded to the recent boom in casual tablet usage by introducing a wider range of personal computing functions to the new device. Though BlackBerry App World has, until recently, also had a strong business focus, the store now offers a growing range of apps designed specifically for home use. Android support was also added in the last systems update, a decision praised in another BlackBerry PlayBook review.

RIMs business-orientated expertise, though, remains very much in evidence in app categories such as Personal Finance. Here’s a small run down of what you can expect BlackBerry App World to offer you in this respect.

Individual Banking apps. If you’ve plumped for the latest BlackBerry PlayBook 4G LTE you will be well stocked in this regard, with Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo, US Bank and TD Bank all supplying free applications via BlackBerry App World. These apps allow you to monitor balances, transfer funds and pay bills whilst on the move. Many of them also enable you to find your nearest ATM or branch, making them really useful mobile financial tools.

Currency Converters. Invaluable, for those who shop or work internationally. One of the best for the BlackBerry PlayBook is Infinite Appz’ Currency Converter Pro. This free app supports over 200 international currencies and following its recent update gives real time currency rates. Perhaps its most useful feature, though, is the fact that it saves the currency you most recently selected, eliminating the need to search for it the next time you use the app.

Interest rate calculators. Something like FinCal from Ksoft will quickly and easily help you project future spending. This app operates on a present value, future value, periods and interest rate basis, working out any one of these values when the other three are entered. This is great if, for example, you want to work out the rate of interest on a monthly payment plan: you simply enter the value of the item, the total amount you will pay and the number of payments, and it will work out your effective monthly interest. While such calculations are not exactly inspiring, knowing exactly how much you’re paying at present and in the future is a crucial part of keeping your finances under control.

Payment Planners. Perhaps the most useful financial apps available through BlackBerry App World allow you to easily keep track of your bills and regular expenses. Bill Manager from Oswald Designs is an excellent example. Crucially, it lets you set reminders, and alerts you when each bill is due. It will also calculate an estimate for the bill amount, ensuring you hopefully never miss a payment again. For those who are super organized, the app even lets you export files in CSV format, so that you can email your bill logs to keep a record. Again, this app is also free and there’s therefore no excuse for not picking it up.

Though these four types of apps have a wide range of uses, they all will help you sort out your personal finances, manage your budget and make the best decisions about your financial future.

If you have a BlackBerry PlayBook, which personal finance apps have you found the most useful? Let us know in the comment box!