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Awesome Venmo API Hacks

· by Cassidy Williams

By Cassidy Williams

Hi friends!

Venmo loves going to hackathons and seeing awesome projects that developers come up with. I recently talked to a few people who made some great ones, and I'm going to tell you about them!


Michigan State students Caitlin McDonald and Erin Hoffman built this project and won the Venmo prize at MHacks V!

Students and families alike love to take road trips across the country. Road trips are a fun way to experience small town America while getting us to our final destinations with minimal expenses. Despite their advantages, however, road trips can involve tedious financial concerns, ranging from finding the cheapest gas along the route to ordering at a drive-thru window with a car full of people. With Via, these issues evaporate to provide a fun, carefree roadtripping experience.

Via provides some helpful roadtripping features while also tracking all of your expenses along the way, allowing for easy reimbursements between roadtrippers.

The team built Via as a mobile web app, using Ruby on Rails and PostgreSQL for the database. The main API used was Venmo (for user login, friend lists, and payments), but they also used the Google Maps API, Google Places API, and the MyGasFeed API. The icons are Twitter emoji, but the rest of the graphics they made themselves.

Take a look at Via on ChallengePost!


Purdue students Vipul Nataraj, Drew Ruberson, Josh Foeh, and Zachary Simpson worked on this fun project for the Pebble watch.

Paybble is an application developed for Boilermake Fall 2014 that allows you to pay people on your contact list directly through your Pebble watch. In order to use the service, the user has to have the companion iPhone application installed and allow application access to their Venmo account. Once these prerequisites are complete, the user can then use the Pebble watch to cycle through their contact list and select a contact to pay as well as an amount. After confirmation, the application carries out the transaction and even sends both the payer and the payee notifications via text message. This application is targeted towards people that want to utilize Venmo but are always too lazy to pull out their phones to do it.

Gotta love those lazy piles. <3 data-preserve-html-node="true"

If you want to see more about the project, check it out on ChallengePost

The team also wanted to share their favorite joke with you.
Q: Why do Aliens always choose functional programming languages as their main development languages?
A: Because they’re both stateless.


University of Michigan students Janum Trivedi and Noah Shutty built this project for iPhone, and they won the Venmo prize at PennAppsX!

We love Siri--Apple's sassy voice assistant has delighted us since day one. But why can't Siri make one-time and recurring payments to your friends? Find your backpack for you? Activate your Jambox? Control your automated home? Interface with all your IoT devices?

Though Apple has not released a public API for its voice interface, the team found a workaround that allows third-party apps to grab data from Siri and take actions in response. Importantly, this proceeds without any traffic proxying, data limitations (eg, wifi only), or browser trickery.

Siri, plain and simple. And now limitless.

Check out SiriKit on ChallengePost!

They also shared a funny with us, a quote from Mitch Hedburg: "My fake plants died because I did not pretend to water them."


At the recent HackTheDrive hackathon run by BMW in San Francisco, Gregor Engelmann and his team of 3 built an iOS application that explored a way of identifying energy/fuel costs per passenger based on local fuel/energy rates at the destination.

The application utilized data like GPS location and power consumption, as well as sensor readings like car door status and passenger location within the car from the BMW i3 to identify how many people are sharing the fuel costs for a certain distance driven, and how much it would cost to refuel the car based on local service point rates at the driving destination. The Venmo and PayPal APIs were used to process in-app money requests from passengers.

Want to see more?Check out this list!
Want to make your own?Go for it!


Venmo Hackathon: Winners and Honorable Mentions

· by Venmo

A lot of companies do Hackathons, and Venmo is no exception. What is exceptional, however, is the talent and comradery that emerged during the wee hours last Wednesday night. A poker app, picture uploader, social payment infographics, and many other cool projects all built string by string through the exploration and utilization of Venmo’s digital architecture.

The winning project, although we are all winners here at Venmo, was built by engineers Peyton, Staub (Andrew) and Christine. They built a poker app called PotBot that let’s you create and manage a poker pool and cash out with Venmo. Needless to say, the team was stoked to put this app into action. 

Honorable mentions include, Venmo Goals, the server infrastructure for a Venmo picture uploader (coming soon to the general public), and the Make It Rain app.


Venmo Goals (pictured above) is an app that helps you hold your friends accountable to their resolutions. A user chooses a goal and then up to four sponsors. When the user acknowledges that s/he has “tripped up” on their goals, the app randomly selects a single support to receive a small Venmo payment.

The Make it Rain app, showers your friends with dollars electronically, via Venmo. Just open the app, pick a friend and, with a swipe of your finger, you can make it rain one Venmo dollar at a time.

Hackathons certainly bring out the creativity in people. What ideas do you have for a hack built using Venmo? Email us at for a chance to have your app idea featured on our blog or built during one of our next hackathons.


Venmo's First Hackathon

· by Venmo

Last Friday we held our first (of many more to come) 36-hour hackathon. We had a blast, learned a lot, and slept a little. Here’s a summary of the hacks we created!

Kortina, Shreyans, and Staub at a team meeting on Thursday morning

Venmo Live by Shreyans and Julian

It displays a map of the US (via Google Maps) and, in real time, drops a pin on the location of where a new payment occurs and where a new signup happens. The map resizes itself based on clusters of nearby payments. We’re getting an extra display for this office so we can always have this on!

a screenshot from Venmo Live

Timeflies iPhone app by Matt H and Matt D

Keep track of the Timeflies band with this free iPhone app. Watch their newest Youtube videos and follow their tweets with the app. Show your support for Timeflies by Venmo-ing in the app! It’s even open-sourced on github! Now you can finally pay them back for watching Under the Sea for the umpteenth time.

the Timeflies iPhone app in action

Commit Driven Development by Alan

You’ve heard about test driven development and maybe even readme driven development. But Alan takes it to an even higher level with commit driven development. Don’t let your followers down! Write commits before they happen to keep you on track, productive, and ahead of the trend!

Mobot by Kortina

Manage your tests and commits through gchat! When commits are pushed to the team, notifications are sent out through a team gchat and tests are automatically executed. Additionally, changes can be automatically deployed by using the mobot command in gchat. Things totally just got real.

a screenshot of the team gchat after code commits

Venmo Poker Night by Andrew Staub

Collect buy-ins and pay out winners with this app! After you clean them out, it’s even easier for them to buy back in. Watch the people join the table and stop that one guy from playing without paying.. You know who he is! Refer him to this open-sourced code on github!

Blackberry Venmo App by Jesse and John

The Blackberry app is almost done and Jesse and John learned the joy of developing for Blackberry’s. It can be best (and most accurately) explained through this comedic blog post. Though they only reached about step 40, they now have a deep respect for Blackberry developers. If you’re on a Blackberry, stay tuned for the app! Slow and steady wins the race!

Venmocorp Reimburse by Iqram

One of the many perks at Venmo is instant reimbursement for office supplies and team goods. To keep it neat and tidy, Reimburse categorizes payments and makes it even easier to get reimbursed. As an extra bonus, it has a shnazzy background too. Unfortunately it’s only an internal tool, but we thought you readers would be proud.

And final props to Venmo Underground by Jenny! Our support tools used to be a complex combination of Assistly, Asana, and email. But with Venmo Underground, it’s a one-stop shop for everything, and it looks phenomenal. Never before will helping our users be as easy as it is fun :)

a picture from late Thursday night

Venmo’s First Hackathon was a total domination! If you have any suggestions for us at the next Hackathon, contact us at

We closed out Friday night with demos and catered Sri Lankan food. It was a smashing success! Somewhere buried in our phones is a picture of Iqram and Kortina sleeping on the bed. Let’s hope it resurfaces. At one point, I could have sworn that I saw Julian go for his 3rd Chipotle burrito in those 2 days. And at 2:15am on Friday morning, the team eagerly did the most energetic shake down I’ve ever experienced. That’s Venmo, and we love what we do :)

Want to help us brew cool stuff at the Venmo labs? Check out our jobs page.