This app warns you and your friends when you’re on the verge of a splurge

No trip down Madison Avenue or the local mall is complete without window shopping. But for some, window shopping can quickly spiral into yet-another maxed out credit card. Online banking firm Ally wants to help curb the unexpected spender inside of us with its own little app called Splurge Alert.

As the name suggests, Splurge Alert aims to stop you from spending too much money on guilty pleasures. Anytime you get a little too close to that Starbucks, Macy’s, or Best Buy, Splurge buzzes up in your phone and warns you not to break the bank again.

“The Splurge Alert app was designed as a creative way to bring attention to areas where consumers, and celebrities, tend to overspend,” Ally’s Chief Marketing Officer, Andrea Riley, told Digital Trends in an email interview.

You can set up your stores by category, including designer fashion, fast food, electronics, and even liquor stores. Then, Ally’s Splurge app will use the Google Maps API to locate nearby stores that meet your category, and warn you to stay strong and avoid temptation as best you can.

But the warnings don’t end there. Ally’s Splurge App will not just warn you about avoiding that urge to go inside, but it’ll let your friends know about it, too. You can set up “Splurge Buddies” who will get alerts via text message when you enter a splurge zone. Then, your friend can also jump in and tell you to stop before you spend.


If you do enter the store, you and your friend will be alerted. Messages like, “Grab a nice big cup of ‘Get the heck outta here,’” might appear in all their cheesy glory from your iPhone to try and encourage you to get out while you can.

The app doesn’t link to social media, and you don’t need the app to be a buddy, which makes the setup a bit more discrete and easy. It doesn’t try to sell you anything, either, nor do you need to be an Ally customer for the app to work. According to Riley, Ally is just trying to just get the word out to millennials about overspending.

“According to a poll conducted on Ally’s behalf, 85 percent of consumers are guilty of splurging at least occasionally. We believe that it’s beneficial to raise the conversation and awareness around overspending,” noted Riley.

When it comes to financial apps, this has to be one of the most interesting — and off-beat — ones we’ve seen yet. Ally isn’t trying to get you to be a customer out of the app right now, and it’s free to use and free for your buddies to join in on the fun. If you’ve got a bad habit you’re looking to kick, this app might be worth downloading. There’s certainly a few habitual splurgers out there who could use some negative reinforcement.

Right now, Ally’s Splurge Alert is available for iOS devices as a beta. You can sign up to test it here.


Rekindled yet again, Nokia’s next-gen phones offer more than just nostalgia

HMD Global, a startup that designs and builds Nokia Android smartphones, wants to put the Nokia brand name back “where it belongs.” It helps that it’s made up of ex-Nokia employees. We go behind the scenes to see how HMD formed.

These point-and-shoot cameras make your smartphone pics look like cave paintings

If your smartphone camera just isn't giving you the results you're looking for, maybe it's time to step up your game. The latest and greatest point-and-shoot cameras offer large sensors, tough bodies, and long lenses -- something no phone…

Don’t even bother with the rest. Here are the only laptop brands that matter

If you want to buy your next laptop based around a specific brand, it helps to know which the best brands of laptops are. This list will give you a good grounding in the most reliable, quality laptop manufacturers today.

Here's what you need to know about 'World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth'

World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is the latest expansion for the now 14-year-old MMORPG. It goes back to the roots of the Alliance vs. Horde conflict. Here's what you need to know.
Smart Home

Slip on Soma’s smart bra and you may discover you’ve been wearing the wrong size

You might think you know your bra size, but it’s probably wrong. Instead of a tape measure, Soma wants you to try on its Somainnofit smart bra, which takes measurements at four points and has an app that recommends better-fitting bras.

Apple’s iPhone battery offer was reportedly way more popular than expected

As many as 11 million iPhone owners reportedly made use of Apple's cheaper battery replacement offer that launched in 2018 in response to the iPhone throttling debacle — some 10 times more than the company had apparently expected.

Samsung rumored to mark 10 years of the Galaxy S line with a 5G model

Samsung is rumored to launch a 5G version of the Galaxy S10, called the Galaxy S10 X. The phone may be larger than the standard Galaxy S10 devices, and feature a very impressive specification sheet.

Our favorite Windows apps will help you get the most out of your new PC

Not sure what apps you should be downloading for your newfangled Windows device? Here are the best Windows apps, whether you need something to speed up your machine or access your Netflix queue. Check out our categories and favorite picks.

The most expensive Galaxy S10 could be the priciest Galaxy phone we've seen

Not long now; with 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.

Yes, Android apps can run on your PC, and it's easier than you think

Wish you knew how to run Android apps in Windows? It's easier than you might think and there are a number of different ways to do it. In this guide, we break down the steps so you can follow along with ease.

Unleash your inner artist with the best drawing apps for the iPad Pro

The best drawing apps for the iPad Pro turn Apple's robust tablet into a canvas worthy of a true artist. Here are 20 of our current favorites, whether you're looking to keep things simple or take your art to the next level.

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019: Complete Coverage

There's no bigger show for mobile tech geeks than Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain: where flagship phones are born and intriguing new wearables shine. And this year, where foldable phones and 5G are likely to dominate the news. For…

C you soon? Rumors swirl of a USB-C port on 2019 iPhones

While it's not been long since the last iPhones launched, rumors for the next iPhone are already surfacing. Apple's 2019 flagship could include a variety of upgrades ranging from a new design to enhanced features.
Emerging Tech

CES 2019 recap: All the trends, products, and gadgets you missed

CES 2019 didn’t just give us a taste of the future, it offered a five-course meal. From 8K and Micro LED televisions to smart toilets, the show delivered with all the amazing gadgetry you could ask for. Here’s a look at all the big…