Subscription Model

Hello,
I'm a 20 year quicken user, but I'm new to the Mac subscription model. I don't use all the bells and whistles on quicken, but I do value the ability to download from financial institutions. Can you tell me the most cost effective way to maintain this functionality? Thanks.

Best Answer

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Accepted Answer
    Yes, reports are one of the areas where the program has made considerable progress since Quicken 2017. I wasn't willing to switch from Quicken 2007 until last year, and one of the things that changed to allow me to move forward was the improvement in reports.

    That's not to say that reports now have all the features, bells and whistles that users want. Reports on investments aren't as robust as many investment-oriented Quicken users would like. Subtotals still appear on top of, rather than below, the data they summarize (which drives me nuts but doesn't bother others). There isn't complete control over specifying multiple levels of subtotals/sorting. (And there are more issues, which I won't try to detail here, which are hopefully on the roadmap for improvement over time). But for me and a vast majority of Quicken Mac users, reports are now capable enough to do the work we need. Some things are simply different than Quicken 2007, but different doesn't necessarily mean worse. For instance, the much-beloved Quick Reports don't exist as they did in Quicken 2007, but you can easily do most of the same reports through either Search or "Report on…" features.

    Depending what reports you used, you may find the current reports meet your needs, or you may find stumbling blocks. Which brings it back around to giving it a try to see how well it works for your needs.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993

Answers

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    It's pretty simple, actually. The software is now sold on a subscription basis. You need to maintain a subscription unless you want to use the software completely manually. So determine which Quicken you need -- probably Quicken Deluxe -- and buy a subscription from Quicken or a retail site. (You can often find discounted deals for an initial subscription, although Quicken seems to be clamping down on getting full-price for renewals.)

    It doesn't matter much which features of Quicken you do or don't use. If you track investments, and you want to download your banking and/or investment transactions, then you need Quicken Deluxe. Quicken Starter doesn't handle investments; Quicken Premier only adds online bill payment and priority queuing for support calls.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Architect
    Architect Member
    Hi Jacobs,

    I am a similar user, currently on Quicken 2017 Mac. I have been a user for over 25 years, but have always been completely manual. I have never downloaded transactions from financial institutions. And I have never used online bill payment. I would however like to update to current Quicken capabilities. I realize that my only option now is the subscription model, and that is okay, but I don't really need to keep current every year.

    So, if I subscribe for now in order to update my software version, but choose not to renew, will I be able to continue using Quicken on my Mac desktop after the subscription ends? From your comments above, it seems like that is allowed, so long as I do everything manually (as I have been doing). Just want to make sure of this before doing anything.

    Also wondering if I would be able to go back to Quicken 2017 after trying the new version, if there is any reason to do so. Thanks.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    @Architect  If you purchase a current subscription, after your subscription lapses, you will be able to continue adding transactions manually. The only caveat to be aware of is that Quicken will chop off roughly 20% of the right side of your Quicken window for a notice/ad about renewing your subscription. There's no way around it; you just need to make your window wider and/or do more horizontal scrolling. If you think you can live with that, then you'll be okay; if you think that will drive you crazy, well, that's what you're in for if you choose not to renew.

    Quicken doesn't really want people buying updates periodically and then dropping out; they want people as ongoing subscribers, because that's what pays the bills to continue to add features, fix bugs, keep up with changing security protocols, provide support, etc. They were originally going to make the subscription product "read only" if your subscription ended, but there was a great outcry from users, so their "compromise" was to allow users with lapsed subscriptions to continue to use the program manually, but bug you to renew. It's an odd approach to customer retention, in my opinion, but the brain trust at Quicken decided on this approach back when they introduced subscriptions in 2017, and they haven't changed the policy since -- so they must feel it drives more people to renew than it drives people away.

    As for your other question, the database is significantly changed with some of the new features which have been added since Quicken 2017, and it will create a new data file from your Quicken 2017 data file. You cannot open your Quicken Subscription data file with Quicken 2017 due to the changes in the database. So if you want to purchase a Subscription and try it out for a few weeks before deciding whether to keep it or get a refund and revert to Quicken 2017, then you would need to enter your data in parallel in both Quicken 2017 and Quicken Subscription. (You can have both programs, and both data files, on the same computer, and even run them simultaneously if you wish; they're completely separate.)
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Architect
    Architect Member
    Great answer. Thank you. You addressed all of my concerns.

    I do have a follow up though. My primary reason for wanting to update is the inadequacy of the reporting capabilities in Quicken 2017 for Mac. I've read a lot of other users' comments about this, and it looks like Quicken has been steadily but slowly improving in this area. In my experience, Quicken 2017 is still well behind the reporting flexibility of Quicken Mac 2007, which I was using previously. So my question is, in your opinion, has Quicken reporting improved significantly from 2017 to 2021? I realize the only way for me to know is to try it out for myself and see if it meet my needs, but nevertheless, I'd like your opinion.

    Thanks.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Accepted Answer
    Yes, reports are one of the areas where the program has made considerable progress since Quicken 2017. I wasn't willing to switch from Quicken 2007 until last year, and one of the things that changed to allow me to move forward was the improvement in reports.

    That's not to say that reports now have all the features, bells and whistles that users want. Reports on investments aren't as robust as many investment-oriented Quicken users would like. Subtotals still appear on top of, rather than below, the data they summarize (which drives me nuts but doesn't bother others). There isn't complete control over specifying multiple levels of subtotals/sorting. (And there are more issues, which I won't try to detail here, which are hopefully on the roadmap for improvement over time). But for me and a vast majority of Quicken Mac users, reports are now capable enough to do the work we need. Some things are simply different than Quicken 2007, but different doesn't necessarily mean worse. For instance, the much-beloved Quick Reports don't exist as they did in Quicken 2007, but you can easily do most of the same reports through either Search or "Report on…" features.

    Depending what reports you used, you may find the current reports meet your needs, or you may find stumbling blocks. Which brings it back around to giving it a try to see how well it works for your needs.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
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