Turbotax Online vs Desktop: Which is the Best for Your Tax Filing Needs?

Turbotax Online Vs Desktop

The season of tax filing is rarely considered to be a time to enjoy or have fun. The fact is that none of us like filling our tax returns and filing the taxes. The reason behind this is that we consider it to be a hectic task, which turns out to be an exhausting period of time. It becomes more complicated when you have to itemize each of your earnings, holdings, and personal valuations. But, the good news is that if you own Turbotax Online vs Desktop, tax returns and filing can be an easy task for you.

Turbotax, which has been developed by Intuit, is one of the most demanding and best tax filing software in todays’ time. TurboTax can be used either as a desktop software version or either as cloud software online. But do you know what exactly the difference is between Turbotax Online Vs Desktop? If not, then don’t worry! We will discuss a few differences between both versions in this article.

Is Turbotax Better than other Tax Filing Software?

Turbotax Online or Turbotax Desktop Software is widely used by tax professionals or taxpayers, whose tax calculations are complicated. There are many other renowned tax filings software such as Credit Karma or H&R Block, but TurboTax is considered to be a versatile tax filing software that is leading the tax market in the long term. Through TurboTax, users can easily self-file taxes just by using their computers. Even if you are eligible for an IRS Free file program, TurboTax will help you in filing your tax for income up to $36000 for free. With many more benefits, TurboTax has proved to be the best option as an exceptional tax filing software.

Difference between Turbotax Online vs Turbotax Desktop

Turbotax Online Vs Turbotax Desktop Software, both are the same software, but a kind of different version. One is suitable for the online cloud and the other is a downloadable version for desktops. Although there is not much difference between the features and functionalities of these two versions of Turbotax, there are a few divergences which you should be aware of.

Below are some major differences between Turbotax Online and Turbotax Desktop Software. Let’s begin!

TurboTax Online

  • Everything is put away in the cloud at TurboTax.com
  • Gotten to through an internet browser
  • Should be online to utilize it
  • Don’t import information from Quicken or QuickBooks
  • Can plan 1 government assessment form
  • No business returns (LLC, S or C Corp, Estate, or Trust)
  • A predetermined number of stock exchange

TurboTax Desktop

  • Introduces on a PC or Mac, no internet browser required
  • Imports information from Quicken or QuickBooks
  • You can plan and file 5 government gets back with no extra expense (ideal for families with numerous profits)
  • You can plan and paper record limitless returns
  • Permits you to amend earlier years’ profits
  • Your delicate monetary data isn’t put away in the cloud
  • Can deal with in excess of 500 stock exchanges
  • Can get ready returns for a business (LLC, organization, enterprise, bequest, or trust)
Turbotax Online Vs Desktop


In the case of TurboTax online, obviously, you do not require any installation of software as it is cloud software. Therefore you will just need to access TurboTax online through the official website. All you need to purchase a monthly or yearly access membership plan to use TurboTax Online without any hassle. But in the case of TurboTax Software, you will have to download and install the software on your PC. You can download the software version of TurboTax online by paying its purchase fee or even you can buy a TurboTax Software CD from stores.

Access to TurboTax to File Taxes

When you use the TurboTax Online cloud, you can prepare and file your returns and taxes from any computer or device with the help of just an internet connection access. But without an active internet connection, you cannot work on your taxes and you cannot even access the files. In the case of TurboTax Software, you can easily work on your taxes even if you don’t have an active internet connection. Without an active internet connection, you can access your files from your own system.

Data Storage

For data storage options in TurboTax Online, you get a flexibility option for all your tax-related and private information. You can store this information on online secure servers of the TurboTax Online Cloud system. Therefore, you can also work on this information and access them from anywhere and anytime. In the case of TurboTax Software, which is installed on your PC, you have to store your information on the hard drive of your PC. The tax data file will not be present on the cloud server, as it is in TurboTax Online.

Ease of Use

With TurboTax Online, you will be able to work on your tax return and filing from different devices and locations. If you start your work from one device, you can also finish it from any other device. You will only need access to the internet. But, in the case of the desktop version of TurboTax Software, you can only work on your tax filing with one system, in which you have installed the software. You cannot access it from different devices and locations.

Operating Systems

TurboTax Online is compatible with both Windows OS and Mac OS. There is no foundation of your operating system while you are accessing Turbotax Online from any system. But, if you are willing to use TurboTax Software, you can only download it to a system that has a Windows operating system of a version above Windows 7. Turbotax desktop versions are only compatible with Windows 7 and above OS. If you are using any OS which is below Windows 7, then you cannot use the desktop version of TurboTax.

Update Process

Turbotax Online, being cloud software has no hurdles of updating the latest versions. In case of any release of updates from the company’s side, the online cloud system of TurboTax automatically updates on the servers. Therefore, when you open your Turbotax Online, you will always get an updated version with no extra effort. But for Turbotax Desktop, you have to check for updates manually and install them when the software prompts for any available updates. Updates are required in tax filing software because the IRS releases new income tax codes frequently, and also the tax laws can change often.

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You must have noticed that there are not many differences between Turbotax Online and Turbotax Desktop software. Still, we hope that our informative article has helped you much in getting knowledge of the major differences between both Turbotax versions.