Stanley hears the criticisms loud and clear. Intuit took its eye off Quicken, he says, and plans to fix that in a redesign. "We lost our way in personal finance (software)," he says. Intuit is overhauling many of the things that irritated old Quicken consumers and turned off potential new ones, he says. The software is being given a dramatic tune-up for Quicken 2010, he says.
Online, though, Quicken faces more challenges. Numerous sites have emerged that let consumers, usually for free, do basic tracking of their money. Many banks also offer finance tracking on their websites. "There's a generation that doesn't know anything but online," says Joseph Polverari of Yodlee, a firm that allows financial institutions to share information with consumers online.
Several upstarts hope to chip away at Quicken by offering slick online products to compete with the Internet version of Quicken, called Quicken Online. "Intuit used to be very customer-focused," says Aaron Patzer, CEO of online personal finance site Mint. "They lost that 10 years ago."
But Stanley says Quicken, famous for sending software engineers to users' homes to watch them do their taxes, is paying close attention to customers now. "We're going after personal finance for the masses," he says. "Personal finance will look very different five years from now."