Review: Digit - Your Automatic Personal Pickpocket

Technology is a beautiful thing.  On one hand we seriously risk getting replaced by computers in the near future (See We got to see how IBM's Watson supercomputer could help diagnose a patient).  On the other hand, I'm constantly discovering new toys to help me save and invest my money.  Read on for a brief review of Digit.

What is Digit?

In case the youtube video isn't entirely revealing, Digit is a service that automatically withdraws money from your linked checking account into a savings account.  Digit offers a novel and fun way to save money you may have otherwise spent less wisely.  The basic service is simple to sum up:

  1. Sign up for Digit online.
  2. Link your checking account with Digit.
  3. Watch the savings roll in!

Once you have the Digit service set up, you can manage your savings via Digit.co, the Digit App (Android/iOS), or by text messaging.  See below for some selected screenshots.

Key FAQs:

  1. Where does your Digit savings go?  The funds in your Digit account are held at FDIC insured banks up to a balance of $250,000.
  2. How does Digit determine how much to save?  Digit looks at your account balance, upcoming income, bills and recent transactions to determine how much money to safely set aside.  If for some reason they overdraft your account, you are covered under the Digit no-overdraft guarantee.
  3. How often does Digit save?  Most people will see 2-3 transfers a week.  You can change the frequency of savings by texting "save more" or "save less" to Digit.
  4. How much does Digit cost?  Digit is completely FREE!
  5. How does Digit make money?  Digit earns interest on the savings they hold for you.  In addition, they are backed by venture capital.
  6. Do you earn interest on your Digit savings?  Digit doesn't pay interest in a traditional sense. Rather they pay you a Savings Bonus which amounts to $0.05 for every $100 you have in your Digit account every 3 month.
  7. Is Digit secure?  Digit uses state-of-the-art security measures. Your personal information is anonymized, encrypted and securely stored.  You can read more about Digit's security practices HERE.
  8. How do you withdraw money from Digit?  You can access your funds at any time by texting "Withdraw" to Digit. There are no fees or limits on how much or how often you can withdraw.

PROS

  • Fun and novel way to save.
  • Automated and precise - I noticed that Digit will change the withdrawal amount depending on my income/expense patterns.
  • FREE.
  • Cool factor - manage your account online, via the Digit app or by texting your commands to Digit.

CONS

  • Savings Bonuses amounts to a very low interest rate.  $0.05 for every $100 every 3 months translates into 0.2% APR which you can easily beat with almost any other savings account.
  • Sharing your bank info with Digit.  While Digit promises security, we all know there is no such things as a 100% secure system.  Just think of it as the same level of risk as using your bank's online system.

Verdict

Digit is a novel and fun way to automate your savings.  Think of it as your automatic personal pickpocket.  Except in this case, the pickpocket ends up paying you!  If you are intrigued and want to try out Digit for yourself, you can support the mission of this site by signing up via the FPMD referral link.  Thanks in advance!


Sponsor Highlight

Curbside Real Estate is a concierge brokerage that specializes in connecting physicians, many of whom have recently completed their residency programs or fellowships, with the best home loan program for them and a carefully-vetted real estate agent, effectively eliminating the guesswork and frustration commonly associated with buying a home.  The mission of Curbside Real Estate is twofold. Its primary mission is to allow physicians to focus more on their profession and families, and less on the stresses of buying a home, by streamlining the process. Its secondary mission is to give back by creating homes for underprivileged children.


Future Proof, MD

Dr. Bo Liu is an aspiring radiologist-in-training and the founder and editor of the White Coat Money Blog.  He has an interest in interventional radiology and helping his medical colleagues get ahead in this mad world of medicine and money.  When he's not crushing the list at the PACS station or typing up your next favorite blog post, you can usually find him at the local badminton club, movie theater or the most recently opened restaurant.