Splitting the Tab with Your Smartphone

Everyone’s dishes arrive at the table, and friends settle into an excited chatter as they catch up on life and share their food. What started out as smiles and laughter end up turning into anxiety and headaches when the bill arrives. Most people ordered their own dishes, while a few also shared some appetizers. How much should each person pay?

Recognizing that splitting bills fairly is often a tedious process that disrupts the social experience, Ryan Chang created Plates, a free personal bill-splitter app currently available on Android, and coming soon on iOS. Unlike other bill calculation apps such as CheckPlease or Tip Calculator, Plates enables users to add an unlimited number of “plates” with their respective costs, indicate which plates are shared, and apply custom tip and tax rates. That way, there is no need to burden one person with the responsibility of calculating how much everyone should pay.

With the rise of electronic mobile payment systems like Square and Google Wallet, the future may soon see people calculating what they owe on Plates and directly paying through their smartphones. By making the tiresome process of settling the tab a seamless experience, Plates allows people to fully enjoy each others’ company and make the most of their dining experience.

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