TurboTax Online vs. TurboTax CD/Download Software
Which one's better? You decide! Below are the major differences between TurboTax Online and the TurboTax CD/Download software.
No matter which one you go with, you'll be getting the same quality product that has made TurboTax the #1-rated, best-selling tax software year after year!
TurboTax Online vs. TurboTax CD/Download Software Feature Table
Features & Advantages –
|TurboTax Onlne editions||TurboTax CD/Desktop editions|
|One return for each sign-in.
Form 1040-EZ or 1040-A with standard deductions and no state or add-ons is free with TurboTax Free edition.
|Efile up to 5 family or personal returns.
(Useful if doing joint federal and spearate state returns for example.)
|Try before you buy, pay for TurboTax plus or Deluxe and above when you efile or print your return.||Buy before your try with a 60 day money back guarantee!|
|Each state is extra and includes efiling.||One free state is usually included with Deluxe, Premier, & Home and Business editions (each state efile is extra).|
|Can efile one federal and up to 5 state returns.||Efile up to 5 federal returns, each with up to 3 state returns.|
|Online system requirements are usually lower, a current browser and internet access should be good.||System requirements are usually higher, see Windows requirements or Mac requirements.|
|TurboTax securely handles storage and backups (pay for TurboTax Plus or Deluxe and above for access to prior tax year returns).||You manage your own stoarage and backups.|
|Prepare and file taxes from any Internet device. Even smart phones, iPads and tablets! Check out our new mobile apps for iOS and Android.||TurboTax requires a Windows or Mac computer system with Internet access for program updates, help articles, and efiling.|
|TurboTax Online is always up-to-date; you see the latest forms and tax information.||The latest upates will load when you access the internet.|
|Requires a unique User ID and password for each return. And you must remember it from one year to the next to access last years tax information.||Tax files are available as long as you have a computer and the program, and you keep your tax files (remember to keep backups).|
TurboTax Online Deal-Breakers
There are a few things TurboTax Online cannot handle. You must use the CD/Download software if you:
- Need to file a corporate (Form 1120/1120-S), partnership (Form 1065), or estate/trust (Form 1041) return – you'll need the TurboTax Business software;
- Need to prepare, amend, or file your 2012 through 2014 taxes; or
- Need to import data from Quicken or QuickBooks; or
- Need to download more than 500 stock transactions.
Although TurboTax Online and the personal tax software handle the same tax forms, in rare situations we recommend the software over the online version (for example, if filing Form 982).