Every year more and more people do their taxes on a mobile device such as an iPhone or iPad. Doing your taxes with an app is slowly becoming the norm with most of the major tax software brands offering an app for your phone and tablet. Not every tax preparation app is created equal and almost all of the apps right now seem to take a different approach to helping you get your taxes done fast on mobile. We break down a few of the best apps for doing your taxes from a phone or tablet along with a few tips on what the app should have in order for it to be worth it.
TurboxTax is one of the most well-known tax preparation software companies around. They have apps that are compatible for just about every type of device including the iPhone and iPad as well as even older Android devices and the Apple Watch. The app has the ability to take a photo of your W2 and quickly fill in your information and gives you simple questions to quickly figure out your tax details. The app is free to download within the app store but there are costs involved with filing a federal return as well as other things like advnaced features and audit protection.
Available For: iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Android
H&R Block offers a mobile app for preparing your taxes that works for the iPhone, iPad, and most Android devices. You can prepare your taxes in just minutes by taking a photo of your W2 and having the app fill in most of the information. The information is all stored in their secure cloud server meaning that you can switch between phone, tablet, and other devices such as your laptop. You can download the app for free and then pay for each service you need to file your taxes.
Available For: iPhone, iPad, and Android
Taxslayer is one of the lesser-known tax preparation brands when compared to the powerhouses of H&R Block and TurboTax, but their powerful app puts them on an even playing field in both ease of use and features. You can prepare your taxes quickly with the ability to scan your driver’s license to have your personal data filled in automatically as well quick yes or no questions to give them insight on what all your need to file. The app is free to download with in-app purchases for filing federal income tax as well as advanced features.
Available For: iPhone, iPad, and Android
Tips For Choosing The Right App To Do Your Taxes
As we mentioned previously, not all apps are created equal when doing your taxes. Since most of the time you don’t want to have to type out long paragraphs on your phone you will want the app to have a W2 picture to form option as well as other features more geared towards mobile devices. You can find a few tips below on choosing the right app to do your taxes this year.
- Security First – When choosing an app to prepare your taxes the first thing you want to do is make sure it’s a reputable and known company that taxes security seriously. This is why we would recommend that you choose one of the apps above such as Intuit TurboTax, H&R Block, or Taxslayer and avoid seedy apps that may seem cool or cheap but will sell off your most personal of information. One major rule to go by when preparing your taxes is go with security first over the coolest or most innovative looking app not from a reputable brand.
- Check For Scanning/Picture Options – Many of the tax prep apps have the option to scan things like your driver’s license or W2 form to fill in the information automatically. This can save you a lot of time when preparing your taxes. Each of the apps we’ve featured above had some type of scanning option, but they all seem to be scanning different things and not all of the forms and information. So before choosing which app you want to use make sure that it saves you some time by having a scanning or picture option.
- Browse Through App Store Reviews – Even though it’s common sense, the overall best way to choose the right app for you is to browse through all of the reviews and ratings in the app store. You can first take a look at the star rating and then it’s best to check out some of the highest rated reviews to see what people like as well as the lowest rated reviews to see any potential problems you could run into when using their app.
Feel free to leave comments or your reviews of tax preparation apps below.