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Computer Insider is the world's first broadcast technology series, launched in 1986. Since our first broadcast, we have been constantly redefining our content to meet the needs of consumers to delivering information of value to today's consumer.

Show #2019-82 April 24, 2019

As we rush full steam ahead to the April 30 tax deadline, you might want to consider preparing your taxes on your computer rather than going through the hassle of working it out on the actual forms or incurring the costs of sending off to an accountant or tax service.

I’ve been preparing my returns for years on my computer, and find it really easy. The only challenge I’ve run into is trying to figure out which software package to use. They all seem to be good, so how do you determine which one to go with.

Back when I was hosting the television series, we did extensive testing and ultimately concluded that they were all pretty good, so when choosing which of equally complete software to use, the discussion turns to price.

Intuit has been a perpetual leader in the tax preparation software, but with pricing ranging from $20 to $75 dollars, it’s actually quite expensive, so in the world of the really cheap, we’ve been using Studio Tax, which is a freebie. And just how free is it? Well, according to the website their software is fully functional, and will generate 20 returns for $0.00/return, regardless of the level of income! It’s FREE for personal use with no strings attached: NO name, phone number, address, email, or credit card number.

Their business model is similar to that of a street performer. You can use and enjoy our software and later decide if the experience was worth it and you can afford a donation. What the company is hoping is that individuals who do more than their personal tax returns will select their commercial package which allows for E-Filing, which is mandatory for tax professionals whereas you and I can file our returns by Netfile which is included in Studio Tax.

Reporting for Computer Insider, I’m Bob Pritchard

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