The truth about Intuit and Mac support.

in Mac Software edited January 2014
Intuit finds an interesting way to pay for Mac development other than hifgher prices at the retail store.

The scam is actually on our financial institutions ... we, as Mac owners, just happen to be the victims.

We've been hearing for a while how certain banks don't offer Mac Quicken support - most notably is the Bank of America, which just announced it is dropping Mac support. Frankly, I always thought this was bogus - why doesn't Intuit have a common interface that both macs and PCs can use?

Well, as I discovered this week, there is only one interface - Intuit just uses the fact that some people use Mac to double-charge the banks.

How did I come to this conclusion?

Last week, I opened up a new bank account at a smaller, local bank (was sick of the crappy service at Big Name Bank). When opening the account, I asked, "Can I download transactions into Quicken?"


I didn't dig any further since, my assumption was, once I get the file downloaded, Quicken should just import the data. Well, that's not quite the case.

I go online and download the a "Web Connect" (QFX) file for my account and it gets saved to my desktop. I flip over to Quicken and say "Import Web Connect". Quicken opens the file, proceed to connect to the internet and reports back "Quicken is currently unable to verify the financial institution information for this download. Please try again later."

Hmmm... that's strange. Why did it go online? Why didn't it just import the file?

After a few days of trying different things and talking to the bank, I decided to break down and call Intuit Tech Support ($1.95/minute). After being on hold for awhile and talking to a technician, I am told "Your bank doesn't support Macs". The rest of the conversation was along the lines:

Me: "What do you mean?"

Tech: "You can't download transactions into Quicken from your bank because they don't support Macs."

Me: "That doesn't make sense. My bank is not the issue. I have the QFX file - which is the same file that I would get if I were on a PC - Quicken is just refusing to import it."

Tech: "That's because your bank doesn't support Macs."

Me: "I already have the file from the bank; Quicken just needs to read it in."

Tech: "Quicken needs a QFX file formatted for Macs. Your bank would need to pay to have different servers for Macs."

At this point, I knew I was screwed. So, I started thinking, what information can Quicken be sending when it goes online during an import? The OS, obviously. But, what else? I fired up BBEdit and opened the QFX file. They probably wouldn't send account or transaction info - leaving mainly the following parameters:

ORG (Bank name)

FID (Some ID internal to Intuit)

INTU.BID (Same as FID)

BANKID (Bank Routing Number)

So, for kicks, I called up a buddy of mine who has an account at another bank that has "Mac Access" and asked him to download a QFX file and give me those parameters.

A quick BBedit ... fire up Quicken ... click Import:

Viola! The file imported with no issues. All the online connection does is connect back to Intuit and ask "Has this bank paid for Mac support?" - if the answer is "no", the import is stopped.

Now, since I don't use any Quicken Online Banking features, I can't vouch for how it affects those (I would expect them to fail since the routing numbers are wrong). But, as a pure import facility, there are no issues doing it this way.... which happens to be the only feature that most people I know use (importing vs. Quicken Online Banking).

So, Intuit is going out of their way to make pay for "Mac Support" when it doesn't cost them a cent more. Sure, development of Quicken for Mac might cost more, but that's why it's double the price of the PC version. We pay for certain functions in Quicken - importing transactions is one and to prevent us from doing so because they want more money from our banks just doesn't seem right.

Now the question remains: is there anything we can do about it?

(from a posting on



  • Reply 1 of 4
    email intuit. email intuit ALOT
  • Reply 2 of 4
    noahjnoahj Posts: 4,503member
    I am so sick of Intuit right now I don't even think I will use their tax package anymore either. And I used to push Quicken with everyone I knew. Grrr.
  • Reply 3 of 4
    hobbeshobbes Posts: 1,252member
    Wow. That is interesting, and truly frustrating.
  • Reply 4 of 4
    thegeldingthegelding Posts: 3,230member
    can anyone say, "class action"...g
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