Pulse and Summary are Dead - Long Live Pulse and Analysis!

So I had this great idea for a thread where I’d pronounce Pulse broken and grandly announce some ideas for fixing it. But @Hugo got there first:

I’ve been giving some thought to what Pulse might turn into. But that led to having to do something with Summary first… That’s enough commentary! Take a look at the below and let me know if they make sense - and if this is something that you’d be interested in!

Summary > Analysis

Screen 1:

Tapping on a month:

Pulse v2

Edit: see here for something important I forgot!

Thoughts welcome! I’ll probably post and/or blog about what was going in my head another time!

Edit: explanation in a post below (here)


PS Bonus points if you can spot the app I used for a bit of inspiration!


You’re spending too much on haircuts :smiling_imp:


Ha, don’t trust the data - I made most of it up! :wink:


Very clean! I like it!
I feel like more insights can be built in to this for those that wish to dig deeper in to the nitty gritty of their spendings and opportunities to understand more save better. But a much better development than what we currently have.


One more here with hindsight:


Moving around some of the Summary features means that you need a better place to see upcoming committed spending. I also like the idea of dates being collapsable / rolled up into one line (with future dates collapsed by default) - tap to unroll.


I’ve been trying to think of proper constructive feedback but I’m not a designer so can’t really put my finger on it.
The designs are a little too noisy/busy for me, is the best I’ve got. I love the idea and I think there’s something there though.


I’m more interested in the ideas that the graphics tbh - I’m not a designer, so very happy for folk to say that it looks rubbish but love/hate the idea behind it!


I like the idea of seeing an of the average month, a list of individual months, and then drilling down to the details of individual months.

Reminds me of Fitbit or other health/fitness tracking apps



I was thinking a bit about physical health / mental health / financial health as being an interesting model for health generally… There’s quite a bit of FitBit in these ideas!


I’d much prefer the option to toggle pulse graph off and just rely on summary. I know it all comes down to personal preference. I’ve never really focused on what I spend in each category. If I need to spend £300 on groceries for example then that’s what I spend. The most useful part of summary for me is “left to spend”. Id rather there was focus on recognising secondary incomes to make this feature more intuitive.


Instead of the pulse graph, I’d prefer to see some sort of bar chart (sideways, as your ones above), which summarises in/out with colours, and shows how close you are to running out that month (so like a very condensed version of the Summary tab above the feed). So show Amount left, perhaps amount in and amount out, a bar summarising things, and then more space for the feed. Barclays has something like this which I find more useful than the pulse graph.

In fact I’d also prefer condensed bar charts to the very large (and information light) circle at the top of Summary, then maybe they could show me more of my spending categories in Spending rather than just the top 3.

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Here is my thinking behind these mock-ups. They are based on a set of hypotheses:

  • Pulse is broken. The current account has meant that it peaks then effectively flatlines for many users.
  • The information that lots of users are looking for when opening the app - specifically the Summary dial - isn’t on the home screen.
  • The Summary tab is muddled. I’m not sure it knows what it’s for and I’m not sure it summarises anything.
  • Monzo is in danger of becoming a challenger bank in the sense of challenging the big banks’ market share, rather than challenging what it means to be a bank
  • A wow/delight factor is missing from the app - we’re getting extra functions (which I won’t complain about!) but I fear we’re missing a bit of the gloss, of the extra touches to charm and delight us.

These designs are meant to address these hypotheses - so if these hypotheses are incorrect then the designs will be wrong!

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m not saying that Monzo should evolve to look exactly like this - but that the concepts behind them might be worthy of consideration.

In particular:

Pulse needs replacement.

I’ve suggested two views: one which brings in the critical information from the Summary dial and one which is effectively Pulse as it is at the moment but for discretionary spend only - i.e. excluding regular bills etc - that way it’d work a bit like it used to as a pre-paid card.

I’m conscious that Monzo has sought to reduce options and maintain a clean app, but I think having two views that you could either swipe between or pick as your primary view would go further to delight users.

Moving critical Summary information gives us the option to rethink the tab

There’s been a few iteration of this tab. Spending (as it was originally) gave breakdowns by merchant as well as by categories (on Android, at least). There have been some calls on here to bring it back, and there have been some requests for better search functions - which seem to me to be about better data analysis (who have I spent most money with? And so forth).

Repurposing this tab as an analysis tab let’s you present this information in - hopefully - a visually stunning way. And I think that visually stunning is important - it delights the user, is something that you’d want to show other people and helps to market Monzo.

I also think it’s an opportunity to differentiate Monzo. For very good reason, Monzo is currently plugging functionality gap and building out standard banking functions. But this is to challenge the incumbents for marketshare - we also need to be challenging the notion of what a modern bank is. Some advanced data analysis would really help nudge in that direction, I think.


All good points!

Personally, I’d rather plug Monzo into a third party app that can pull all my other account data too and is dedicated to analysing the lot.

However slickly Monzo does this, the current account is only ever going to be a small fraction of my finances

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I think their ambition is to be that app.


I was thinking a bit about this as I went.

It’s probably worthwhile pointing out that I started from the perspective of fixing Pulse. It was looking at that that led me to consider moving the Summary left to spend info to the home screen - which then opened up the opportunity to do something with that tab.

As I was going I was conscious that this design (probably) only works for one account. I’d really like to see Monzo start to become that financial hub and provide analysis across all my finances, answering questions like ‘what’s my net worth?’, ‘are my bills going up or down’, ‘am I earning more or less after inflation?’…

(I actually started to work up something that did funky graphs to look at trends over time - probably years - adjusted for inflation. But it all got a bit complex and I’ve discovered I’m no good drawing graphs!)


I use Money Dashboard which does the “overview” thing that you are after very well in my view. The downside is that it is only possible to link bank accounts. Your investments, NS&I, ISA’s etc. cannot as yet be shown. But - - - - it’s a good start. I love all this sort of stuff. Well done. R-


I tried Money Dashboard, but didn’t get on with it at all.
Very unintuitive interface and sooooo slow.
Maybe it’s matured a bit!

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On the MDB thing, I see tonight there is an integration with Pensionbee - so things may be changing. R-

I have to agree with a few others, theres just a bit too much going on in some of this.

However, hell of an effort and personally I would like more cohesion between Summary and The Pulse Graph area also.

At the minute I don’t tend to look at Summary just because I know the graph/ring is all out of whack all the time and just wont give me a good enough idea of what my situation is.

Would be nice for the pulse or its replacement to take into account “committed spending” that I can mark which aren’t actual standing orders or direct debits for this but more things I know ill have to budget for, in order to get disposable income because at the end of the day my budget shouldn’t include this.

Lets hope someone at Monzo builds on your ideas and really refines to make this a stand out feature in the future instead of a constant bugbear for many.

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Looks great and better than the current offering. Just looking for anything that supports scheduled payments into the account as using a joint account with two incomes just doesn’t work at the moment as far as the summary is concerned.

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