Price: FREE ($27.99 to $79.99 in-app for Federal Interview)
Version Reviewed: 1.5
Device Reviewed On: iPad Mini 2
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It's tax time. Yay. Intuit hopes that its TurboTax Tax Preparation software for iOS (2014 tax year) will allow folks to celebrate with real gusto.
The software begins simplistically, which is a good thing. If you're a returning TurboTax user, you're prompted to sign back in with established credentials; otherwise you can set up an account using a valid email address. When the account is set up, the program really starts.
It employs an interview process to glean information and lead the filer on the right path. it works through in an intuitive manner, starting with personal information like age, address and marital status, and progresses on to dependents, and then move on to income. The program uses easy language, and also does a good job of incorporating form numbers to further indemnify against errors.
Specifically with W-2, the program allows for the user to take a a photograph of the forms, and then uses the data to fill out the digital forms. The process does require a degree of exactness, but even if the picture is not up to system par, you're given an opportunity to edit and/or supplement the information.
The system then goes on to ask about other financial minutiae and important stuff, and then even figures out if the standard deduction gets the user the most refund.
It's clean going, with bright graphics laid on a business-like white background.
If you used TurboTax the preceding year, it populates data and fields from that year, which makes everything smoother, assuming that most things haven't changed with regards to living circumstances and income sources. Filing can be done right on the device, as can amendments and extensions.
It is reasonably well put together. Mostly. The path taken is fairly customizable, such that one can zoom through or be fairly painstaking if need be. The navigation feels a bit inconsistent at times, though, but I did like that I was able to get through just about the interview on the go. One thing I would like to is the picture/OCR functionality to be expanded beyond just W-2s. Also, I was dismayed that the reviewed Deluxe program did bump me up to a more expensive filing solution as soon as it noted that I wasn't filing a vanilla W-2 based return; this wasn't the case in the past, so to be fair, this review covers the Home and Business flavor. The ability to drop and pick up from computer to mobile device is pretty nifty.
All in all, the program remains smooth, and is almost -- almost -- enjoyable to use.
Hey, this is tax preparation we are talking about here.