02. 💰 Real-life "IT Dog" Refuses to Live Paycheck to Paycheck: Developing a Budget App with a Six-Figure Investment 💼
🚀Inspired by the TV Drama "IT Dog"
The TV drama "IT Dog" has become a hit, with the protagonist Ah Sing developing a mobile app due to financial struggles. Similarly, 90s-born Sherman Lee, also an "IT Dog," decided to start his own business and create a digital financial management app after constantly finding himself living paycheck to paycheck.
Sherman used to track expenses with Excel but found it inconvenient. Image: Money Finder
Many young graduates only earn a few thousand dollars a month, and with living expenses, dining, and transportation costs, it's easy to become a "paycheck-to-paycheck" person like Sherman. He started working and earning money after graduation, and with the mindset of "buy early, enjoy early," he spent over 50% of his income on electronic products. Despite getting a promotion and a raise, his savings didn't increase, and he became a typical "paycheck-to-paycheck" person.
Although Sherman wanted to start a business, he realized he lacked financial management skills after consistently emptying his wallet. To control his expenses, he tried using Excel for expense tracking but found it time-consuming and not mobile-friendly. He also noticed that existing expense tracking apps required users to manually record and categorize transactions, making it difficult to develop a habit of tracking expenses.
The system calculates users' average monthly expenses. Image: Money Finder
With a background in Computer Science, Sherman took the plunge and invested a six-figure sum in January last year to develop an expense tracking app. He developed the backend system himself and utilized Facebook's Messenger platform to launch the "SuiGor" app in September. The app supports Cantonese input and automatically categorizes and calculates expenses.
Sherman said that since he was born and raised in Hong Kong and speaks Cantonese as his mother tongue, he used it as a selling point and adopted Google's Natural Language Processing (NLP) system. When users say "dinner 100 dollars" in Cantonese, the system automatically categorizes "dinner" as a food expense and can even predict users' spending for the next month and provide suggestions. The service charges 38 dollars per month and currently has over 200 users.
Sherman admits, "We know that many Hong Kong people use Whatsapp in addition to Facebook Messenger. We will continue to expand to other popular platforms to make it more convenient for everyone." As for concerns about being restricted by platforms, he said the company has the capability to launch a mobile app version.
Article by: shaing
Photography and editing: Janus
Editor-in-Chief: Loki Chan
Original article URL: https://m.orangenews.hk/details?recommendId=1136981