January 9, 2010

Let Your iPhone Do Your Taxes

It's a new year, which means that in a few months, taxes will come due yet again. So why not get a head start on them with your iPhone -- there is, it turns out, an app for that.

The financial software powerhouse Intuit is releasing an application called SnapTax that lets iPhones prepare tax returns.

The new app will only cost people $10, far less than fees charged by professional tax preparers.

All you do is take a picture of your W2 form with the camera, and then the software automatically reads the form, extracts the necessary information, and then uploads it into TurboTax's software and processes your return.

"We are seeing people finish their tax returns in a matter of minutes," Intuit director of product manager Rich Preece said while demonstrating SnapTax for AFP at a Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

"You can walk to your mailbox, get your W-2, take a photograph of it with your iPhone and by the time you get back to your house you can file your return."

However, the new application is only currently being tested in California. According to Preece, Intuit has plans to expand to more states and more complex tax forms by next year.

"We continue to look at foreign markets to see if we can apply what we do here, but thus far we are only in the United States," Preece said.


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