Can’t hold on to your receipts? Neither can I. I’ve come to realize that my problem is one of absentmindedness — I’ll grab my receipt off the table or from a cashier as I walk out the door, but after that, I usually have no earthly idea where they end up.
That’s where the the purchase tracking buffs at OneReceipt come in (again). Hot off the release of their context-friendly Chrome extension, they have announced that their first mobile receipt scanning app is live in the iOS app store for those of us who just can’t keep track of those little scraps of paper.
For the uninitiated, OneReceipt is a free service that allows users to aggregate their email and paper receipts in one place for later perusal and analysis. Setting up OneReceipt to handle emailed receipts is a breeze — just feed it your email credentials and it’ll automatically cull your receipts from your personal correspondence — but users originally had to punch in details from paper receipts by hand.
With the app now live in Apple’s app store (and an Android version soon to come), OneReceipt is taking a big step into the mobile space. It’s a much-needed one, for sure — packing the ability to upload images of receipts without a pitstop at a PC reduces the amount of friction that comes with changing user behavior. They’re definitely not the first ones who have come to that conclusion though, as similar purchase tracking services like Lemon have had a presence in both the Apple and Android app stores since Day One.
OneReceipt co-founder Sam Fine told me last year that their mobile app would see the light of day in just a few weeks, but those weeks quickly faded into months. Better late than never, I suppose. I’ve been playing with the app for a little while, and though it’s sleek and simple to use, the actual process of uploading a receipt can take a bit of time. I snapped a photo of an old Wawa receipt I managed to dig out my wallet, and app told me up the upload was processing for roughly half an hour before all pertinent info was extracted and turned into an entry in my OneReceipt account.
While I’d much prefer some more timely feedback, the end result was a full listing of the items bought that day (a Nantucket Nectars, an Italian hoagie, and some chips if you must know), whereas my Lemon upload only told me I spent $7.32 in that transaction. I can live without instantaneous uploads if it means I have to do less work manually inputting my purchases in the long run. Users can also dig into the details a bit, as the app allows access to the original receipts (be they emails or receipt images) as well as the ability to tag and categorize purchases.
While I’m fond of the OneReceipt website and the Chrome extension strikes me as a very thoughtful addition, the lack of a mobile app seemed like a critical one. OneReceipt has always been good at handling email receipts, but those only account for a fraction of the purchases I make on a day to day basis. And really, who wants to sit at a computer pecking out how much that pack of gum you bought two weeks ago cost? With the mobile app in place, OneReceipt has finally filled that crucial gap with a set-it-and-forget-it solution that kills much of the hassle that early users had to grapple with.