Onedox Discussion & Feedback

Hi all,

I mentioned in the Emma Pro feedback forum that I thought Emma integrating with bill management services, such as Onedox, could be good. Edoardo asked me to post the idea here so it could be discussed further.

For those of you who aren’t aware of Onedox (by the way, I’m not affiliated with them in any way), they are a household bills management app. Just like Emma lets you link your current account, credit cards, savings accounts and investments and see them all in one place; Onedox does the same, but with household utility bills:

Now, Emma already detects recurring payments and subscriptions, so some of the functionality of Onedox already exists within Emma. Where Onedox goes a step further is that you can actually view your bills within the Onedox app, and Onedox even offers a subscription service where they will automatically move you onto better tariffs if available.

Onedox also already have an API and developer platform, and there are other Fintechs already using it. Starling Bank, for example, allows you to view upcoming payments, your Onedox health score (effectively an indicator of any outstanding admin on your various accounts), and any to-do items created within Onedox, from within the Starling Banking app (apologies for the badly scrubbed out balance on the Wealthsimple tab; I didn’t want anyone seeing how pathetic my pension is!):

I reckon this could be useful behaviour to have within Emma. It would compliment the existing recurring payments/ subscriptions that Emma already handles (with much aplomb, I might add), whilst also allowing users to get more insight into their utility bills. By pulling the data in from Onedox, Emma could benefit from all the existing integrations that Onedox already have with major utility providers; Sky, Virgin Media, Council tax, EE, E.on, British Gas etc.

Perhaps the information could be presented in the existing subscriptions tab within the main feed, or maybe an additional setting for ‘committed spending’ (which could perhaps also include pensions and personal loans, if this were feasible) could be added to the accounts section.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this? It’s really just an idea I had at this point, but I thought it may be worth discussing further.

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I’ve been a long time user of Onedox and have as much as I can linked to it. One of the best features by far is the bill downloads to my Dropbox.

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Do you know what they use to get all the data? It should be a simple scraper that logs into the provider’s website and downloads it all. I think Yodlee had a few connection with UK energy providers.

What do you mean by this?

Emma can see past transactions, total spent, frequency and predict a date, which is most of the time accurate + can be adjusted. :stuck_out_tongue:

Do you mean that they know the exact plan? Why is this useful? Just curious.

Within Onedox, it shows me all my utility bill amounts on a dashboard. In that respect, it’s similar to Emma.

If, however, I then click on one of those bill amounts, I can actually see details of the bill itself (say, meter readings on a gas bill), as well as view a PDF copy of the actual bill.

Whilst Emma can show me when a bill came out, or when a bill is due, as well as whether the billing amount was higher or lower than previously, Onedox lets me see the actual bill, which allows me to work out why it may be higher or lower than usual.

Onedox also stores all previous bills, which can be synced with Google Drive or Dropbox, so over time I can build a complete filing system of my past bills.

Onedox also tracks when a contract expires and marks it as a ‘to do’ item, so once I’m out of contract with, say, my phone network, it will notify me to renew the contract. You can even pay a subscription, and Onedox will automatically move you onto the most suitable tariff without you needing to do anything.

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I’m not convinced this would add much value.

The Starling “integration” is really just three status notifications and a connection to launch the app. Starling doesn’t do anything useful with the data. I’m not even sure they pull much of it.

What would Emma do with the data? Using it to switch providers etc would put Emma in direct competition with Onedox, unless they split the commissions, perhaps…

I suppose a lot of the utility would depend on what information Onedox actually make available via their API. Starling is, as you say, pretty bare-bones; is that because the Onedox API doesn’t actually share much information, or just because Starling chose to do it the way they have? I honestly don’t know.

I’m not necessarily suggesting Emma wants to get in the business of switching people’s providers a la Onedox (unless they want to), but being able to view a recurring payment in Emma, then click on it and see a full utility bill pulled in from Onedox (if, indeed, Onedox allows this) might be useful.

Surely this is just saving you from having to open Onedox. That may be convenient to some users, but I can’t see why Emma would do it. There’s already the transaction data in Emma to tell you when to go and look at your actual bill anyway.

I mean, yes, you’re right, it’s saving you from having to open Onedox.

But isn’t having my Amex account synced with Emma just saving me from opening the Amex app; and isn’t having my Nationwide accounts synced just saving me from opening the Nationwide app?

The value (for me at least) of Emma is having all those integrations in one place, and getting a bird’s-eye view of my finances. If Emma can pull in details of my income, outgoings and committed spending and present it to me in a clear and uncomplicated way (as it does), that’s of real value.

By linking Emma and Onedox, my idea was you could get the extra information that Onedox gives, without cluttering up the Emma app with the kind of features that Onedox already provides.

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The tough question would be to figure out how many Emma users have Onedox and if the extra information is interesting. :smiley:

I have no idea when my contracts are ending, but we are definitely adding bills switching.

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I still don’t think this is the case or should ever be. :laughing:

Yeah, that was a gross oversimplification.

My bad :open_mouth:

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Integrations are cool, but even in this case, it’s a matter of demand.

We could a) integrate with Onedox and ask users to 1) create an account 2) link it in Emma or b) build our own Onedox in Emma. It’s actually pretty simple.

In terms of b), this works just like a bank scraper, but instead of taking banking information, it returns bills info.

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Having everything handled within Emma would be even better!

Poor Onedox. :sob:

I won’t tell if you don’t :smirk:

How much money is Onedox making though?

I’d question the fundamentals, given everyone is getting in on the game and there are plenty of incumbents for switching

I don’t know to be honest. I think they’ve had a couple of funding rounds, and they have a couple of subscription services; plus I imagine they get paid some kind of commission for switching users accounts.

Whether that’s enough to keep the lights on long-term, I have no idea.

It’s a pretty cool service though, and I’ve always found their support really good.

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https://www.onedox.com/openbanking/ … open banking plans.

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Did they close the funding round in the end?