There are so many American taxpayers today who turn to the Internet to efile tax returns that it’s beginning to become clear that regular paper tax returns are likely soon going to become a relic of the past. But how many is so many? The IRS last year processed about 100 million electronic returns. That’s about two out of three taxpayers in the country. It’s about clear then that it isn’t just young people who like the Internet who look with favor upon how convenient it can be to efile tax returns anymore.
But there are those holdouts. Even last year, about 40 million people still used paper to file their returns. As of today, you do have the choice to file any which way you wish. It’s only professional tax preparers that the IRS requires efiling of. Individual tax payers can take their pick. But with efiling quickly becoming the norm, it could only be a matter of time, experts believe, before the IRS begins to phase out paper altogether.
And no one could a root for that to happen more than companies like TurboTax that design software to help people efile tax returns. Using not paper but the Internet to file your taxes has become so popular that there is now even an app for it. TurboTax has its own app for Android phones and the iPhone now – it’s called SnapTax. The tax return has quickly made the leap right from paper, nearly skipped over the browser and gone directly to the smartphone today. It’s pretty simple to use too. All you need do is to get a W-2 form, fill it out, take a picture of it with your smartphone, and wait for SnapTax to quickly map everything directly to the right fields in its own internal electronic form. The app itself is free; the federal and state preparation processes though, require that you pay a $15 fee.
Using your smart phone to efile tax returns can be so quick and so painless that some people report it takes no more than 10 minutes. As popular as this method is, it can’t really take off until smartphones have better user interfaces. With the tiny screens that they have and those tiny keyboards (real or touch-based), intricate work on important documents can never truly be comfortably done. The apps for the iPad and other android-based slates shouldst fare much better.
The great thing about choosing to efile tax returns is that the IRS recommends it as the safest and most secure way to do it. Still, putting all your sensitive personal financial information on your computer or your smartphone, you need to make sure that there are no instances of malware around that could hijack all of it. Doing a full scan of your computer before you start should be great idea.