Quickbooks Onlive versus Quickbooks Desktop

IP4IT Staff
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About 18 months ago I researched the difference between the online version and the desktop versions of QuickBooks.

It became apparent that the online version is a very scaled down subset of the desktop product,

I am wonder has there been any chance since?

I have a customer who has a really old version of QB , I think 2006, he is buying a new Laptop, latest version of MS Office, etc,  I thought that the online version might suit him as he spends a lot of time out off the office as he is a small builder. He spends a day in the office per week, the rest of the time he is on site managing small construction jobs, it might be useful for him to be able to access his QB quotes, ices, etc. Or to generate invoices while off site.

Nore, he is based in Ireland, and ideally the Onlive version would work for local taxes (Revenue, VAT, etc.)

Thanks,
Robbie
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018
Commented:
The Desktop version (V 2018) still exceeds the Online version. I looked recently and continue to like and use the Desktop version.

However, if your user is used to QB 2006, the current Online version would exceed that. So I definitely would look at Online for the type of use described.
There also is available quickbooks desktop 2018 contractors edition which is likely most suited if he is going around working and invoicing clients, personally i have found quickbooks online to be most useful for keeping track of real time bank data. So if he has others working for him and needs to know whether or not to move money over to cover payroll then qb online might be best. It gives real time feeds for all the cash flow and is best for those without a full time receptionist to enter all the purchases in manually and manually.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
For QB Desktop, Contractor, General, Not for Profit) are Report Variations. QB itself is the same version for all such report variations
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Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
I would stick with the desktop version. However, I do find it disturbing that he currently has such an old version (2006?!!) ... please upgrade that ASAP!
Last Knight
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
Hi Robbie,

I love QBO (QuickBooks Online). QBO is the future of QuickBooks and the model almost all software companies are going, which is a subscription cloud based one. So, in general I like to be ahead of the curve not behind it. My comparison is giong to be from a high level, broad stroke...if you want a detailed comparison you need to get specific into what type of desktop version your clients have (Pro, Premier, or Enterprise) and what functionality you think might not be supported in QBO. In any case, with a broad brush here is what the desktop has in terms of functionality that QBO (Essentials & Plus) currently does not support:
  1. calculating/rebilling job costs; and
  2. calculating discounts by customer.

But other than that there is more functionality in QBO as follows:
  1. Automatically schedule & send invoices              
  2. Works on a cross-platform basis: PCs, Macs, smartphones, and tablets
  3. Instant file access for accountants so you don't have to send Accountant file or have your Accountant make physical appointments
  4. App integration - connect to 300+ cloud-based apps
  5. Automatically download bank transactions - w/the desktop version it costs $10-$15/mo
  6. Phone support - w/the desktop version it costs $89/every 3 mo
  7. Automatic data-encrypted back-ups - w/the desktop version it costs $9.99/mo
  8. Access to latest product and features updates - w/the desktop version it costs $299/yr upgrade
  9. Anytime/Anywhere access (hosting) - w/the desktop version it costs $40-$200/mo/user
  10. Licensing per user includes 5 users - w/the desktop version it is a separate purchase to access for up to 5 users
  11. Email setup is not tied to a company mailbox, which can be a pro/con, although I like this because in order to email an invoice on the desktop you are limited to a computer with an Outlook profile setup already.

All the old differentiators in terms of functions (Inventory Tracking, Classification, Custom Reports, etc.) that the desktop could do and that QBO could not has been leveled except for the two I outlined above.

So unless you or your clients have a specific requirement that can now only be fulfilled by the desktop version I'd recommend getting on QBO. Something you should know about QBO is that there is a slight learning curve as the layout is setup differently but all the functionality is there (in other words, don't think the interface is going to be identical to the desktop version...its not). You can test drive QBO before you buy for 30-days (https://quickbooks.intuit.com/pricing/) and once you are ready the data migration process is easy too.

Let me know if you have any questions!
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
Some features make the 2 products different depending on the audience. Other more in-depth features continue to require QB Desktop which I continue to use. My computer weighs 2.5 pounds so it is always by my side.

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