Intuit, maker of popular finance tools (i.e. Quicken, Quickbooks, FinanceWorks, FinanceWorks), announced the upcoming release of an open API and challenged the developer world: "Wanted! The Next Killer Finance App." Intuit President and CEO, Brad Smith, commented: "We're committed to unleashing the power of many to continue creating innovative solutions that improve people's financial lives." In a nutshell, the API will deliver the financial transaction data from thousands of financial institutions in a categorized format.
Data aggregation and categorization are the "heart and soul" of Intuit's products, and these invisible elements of traditional Intuit products are revealed in the API. Mint.com creator, Aaron Patzer, suggests that "access to reliable financial data is among the biggest challenges developers face when working to innovate....These new APIs will accelerate the pace of development we'll see at startups looking to create new services for both individuals and businesses." Priya Haji, CEO of SaveUp, has beta tested the API and confirmed Patzer's suggestion: "Intuit's service is easy to use and helps our customers securely access their data from just about any financial source you can think of through SaveUp."
Intuit plans to open the API to a test bed of customers in October. Wider availability will launch in December. The transaction data pulls from more than 19,000 financial institutions. Intuit believes the open API will inspire the creation of breakthrough products similar to those that populate its current offering. Smith concluded: "Quicken was invented at a kitchen table. Mint arose when its founder got too busy to keep up managing his own money. You never know where the next great idea will come from, but we intend to find out. By reaching out to the developer community, we can help identify and solve important customer problems."