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Summary:

This week, Intuit announced that it will be releasing the 2010 versions of Quickbooks Pro and Quickbooks Premier to users on Oct. 7. So what’s new for Quickbooks users in 2010? Intuit says it has streamlined the install process from 15 screens to only six for […]

box_premierThis week, Intuit announced that it will be releasing the 2010 versions of Quickbooks Pro and Quickbooks Premier to users on Oct. 7.

So what’s new for Quickbooks users in 2010? Intuit says it has streamlined the install process from 15 screens to only six for small businesses with simple accounting needs. You will be able to edit multiple items in the lists of items/customers/vendors at one time in a spreadsheet-style screen, and data can be pasted into those lists from Excel. There are new form templates, and more form customization options, including decorative backgrounds. For more advanced customization, there is integrated access to design services. Quickbooks 2010 users will also have the ability to put their signature on their checks directly within the program without printing them.

Some of the more useful-sounding new features are the additions to the Company Snapshot screen that was introduced in Quickbooks 2009. This screen can now be personalized to display the data most relevant to the user’s particular business. If this works half as well as described it will be a great improvement to what was already one of my favorite features in the 2009 version. This is the most promising sounding of the newly announced features, but also reminds me of iPhone cut-and-paste: something that should have been there from the beginning.

2010_company_snapshot

Another promising area of improvement is in the reporting. According to Intuit, it’s been “radically redesigned” to make it easier to find reports. The redesign includes a carousel view, a list view, and a search function, as well as a favorites view to show your most frequently used reports. As a Quickbooks user who gets annoyed by having to wade through a massive library of irrelevant reports to get to the few that I use regularly, the ability to go directly to a favorites list of reports sounds very helpful.

The most common complaint about Quickbooks has long been its heavy-handed marketing of add-on services inside what is already an expensive software package. Unfortunately, most of the new features being advertised for Quickbooks 2010 appear to simply be an extension of Intuit’s philosophy of aggressively generating add-on sales. Popular personal finance management app Mint.com, recently purchased by Intuit, also operates under a business model based on selling add-on services through its software. But there is a major difference between Mint and Quickbooks: Mint is free.

The features that fall under what Intuit calls its “Connected Services Strategy” include:

  • Document Management Services: These services allow attaching of documents to transactions, accounts or people in Quickbooks. The documents are stored online and can be accessed remotely and shared with others.
  • Check Deposit Services: With Intuit Check Solutions for Quickbooks, users can deposit check payments into their bank account. For companies not already using Quickbooks merchant services, the check service starts at $19.95 per month plus per-transaction fees.
  • Marketing Center: Quickbooks’ integrated email marketing service (currently in beta) offers customizable templates for creating email marketing campaigns and then allows for tracking the results of those campaigns through Quickbooks data.
  • App Center: Everyone has to have apps these days, and Quickbooks is no exception. The App Center contains about 25 programs in four categories. The apps cover topics from task management to project management to online storage. Most are only peripherally related to the core accounting functions, and all but a few require a monthly subscription (although free trials are available).

2010_check_solutions

Quickbooks Pro 2010 will have a single-user MSRP of $199.99, or $179.99 for an upgrade. Pre-order street price for the full version Quickbooks Accounting Pro on Amazon.com is currently $149.99. Quickbooks Premier 2010 will have a single-user MSRP of $399.99, or $349.99 for upgrade buyers. The pre-order street price on Amazon.com is $249.99 for the full version of that program.

If you bought Quickbooks 2009 in the 60 days before the 2010 product announcement on Sept. 28, you will likely be happy to know about the existence of a little-advertised “migration upgrade” program that provides free upgrades to the 2010 version. To get the upgrade if you qualify, make sure you have your 2009 product’s information and sales receipt and call 888-246-8848. Stay on the line after the menu options to reach customer service.

Are you a Quickbooks user? Are you planning to upgrade your software?

  1. Hello,

    I think QB’s new document management system stinks! I want local copies of my documents without having to subscribe to a service. I basically want what is in Quicken.

    I’m very disappointed.

    This appears to be more about selling a service than helping us business owners.

    Thanks for listening.

    -Mark

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    1. I’m sure Nancy will weigh in (I don’t have the details) but I don’t think you have to use the document management service if all you want is local data — it sounds like an optional add-on.

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  2. here here Mark

    “Intuit says it has streamlined the install process from 15 screens to only six for small businesses with simple accounting needs.”
    6 screens, just to get going, is simple accounting!?

    I like that the article mentions Mint; that’s the future (with, what? 2 screens to get started?) Mint is for personal stuff though and not at all helpful for business. Surprised you didn’t mention Outright.com or IAC-EZ just to benchmark Quickbooks progress toward really addressing small business owner challenges as well as they do.

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    1. Hi Jason,

      It will be very interesting to hear more feedback about this “feature”.

      I think there should be 2 options; local or “in the cloud”.

      Thanks for your reply!

      :)

      -Mark

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      1. @Mark
        Oh I don’t disagree that there might be a need for two options (though I believe that’s quickly becoming an irrelevant consideration). In 5 years, all software will be online. Bold prediction? Sure, but I say it with certainty at 10 years. Everything is connected, why not work completely in the cloud?

        I think what you are asking for via Local, is the data export (copies)? You can do the same with online software. Export the data. Stability and accessibility of the cloud is also far greater (note I don’t say “security” as I think the jury is out on that one); online has the cloud to ensure your data isn’t corrupted by a virus or a burned hard drive, and you can access and engage the software from your laptop, iPhone, Starbucks, or while sitting with your bookkeeper.

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    2. We should hopefully have a full review of Quickbooks 2010 when it launches — I’m sure that will mention how Quickbooks stacks up against apps like Outright.

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    3. They call this a NEW feature. Unbelievable. Setup and/or upgrade is a one step process. I really don’t care if it takes a few minutes or an hour.

      There have not been any real NEW features in Quickbooks since at least 2007.

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  5. I will definitely be doing a full review as soon as the product is available in the next week or so and I have a chance to really give it a workout, and will try to address many of the questions that I have heard here when testing the software.

    According to the answer that I got when I asked the Intuit press representative, the document management service is an online-only option. There is no way to attach and store documents if you only want to do it locally on your own computer is my understanding. As anyone knows who read my recent piece about having reservations about cloud storage, this makes me nervous. I’m not sure I want my accounting information on someone else’s computers where it can be accessed via subpoena (instead of search warrant) without me even being notified or having the chance to fight the request.

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    1. Nancy, just wanted to let you know that I came upon this article when I was doing a search for information on upgrading to QuickBooks 2010 for Mac (from QB 2009 for Mac). I had just purchased QB 2009 for Mac on August 31st from Amazon, and now the 2010 version for Mac is available, so I called the 800 number like you suggested and asked about the “migration upgrade” program. Even though your article is about QB 2010 for Windows, Intuit didn’t seem to hesitate to give me the information for “migrating” to QB 2010 for Mac and only having to pay the shipping charges. I’ve sent them all of the proof of purchase info for my 2009 version and I’m now just waiting on my free copy of the 2010 version (free, except for shipping charges, but hey . . . that’s still a deal). Thanks for tipping us off about that program through Intuit.

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  6. Is there anyone else out there who runs a CASH business as opposed to an INVENTORY business?? I’m the owner of an electrical contracting business. I have no inventory other than what is on the vans and some carry over materials from jobs. What I’m looking for QB’s to do for me, is automatically update my item list with a pricing feed from my supplier. When the price of an item changes then I would like the supplier to send me an update that drops right into QB and changes the cost of the item or items. I’m told by my supplier who also uses QB that they currently don’t allow for this feature. How is it possible that such a technologically advanced software can’t even update items automatically??? I believe QB cares more about the money being generated from the merchant services and payroll end of the program. Maybe I’m wrong? I’ve spoken with “BOB” from the call center in India. No help there. Over 2 hours on the phone and I’m no closer to solving my problem. Should I find another business software? Automatic updating just can’t be that difficult when compared to the complexities of tax law and merchant services. As technologically advanced as cars are now days, the dome light still comes on when you open door. Same as it has 40 years ago before the computer brain and fuel injection systems were installed. A LITTLE HELP PLEASE……..

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    1. Hey Jack,

      I run a janitorial business off QB. I’ve had pretty good success with it for over 7 years now. It is geared towards the inventory-oriented business. If you’re pure service, like I am, you’ll still get benefit from it. One of the neat features is that if you do maintain some level of parts you can manage that pretty easily with QB. It even tells you when to reorder once you run down to a certain level.

      For 150 bucks, it’s a bargain.

      However, I do agree with the other posters about the fact that QB hasn’t really done anything innovative in the past half decade. NEW USER FREINDLIER interface for software is about as descriptive as DRINKABILITY for beer. Tells me nothing. The only reason I upgrade is to stay atune to all the new requirements of Windows Operating Systems.

      Hope that helps.

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  7. I AM USING VERSION 5 WINDOWS CAN I UP GRADE TO WINDOWS SIMPLE.

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    1. No don’t switch to Quickbooks Simple. It only really handles Sales, and doesn’t do that too well either.

      One of the older versions of Quickbooks would be better for you, providing they are compatible with your operating system

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  8. I have just install QB2010 PRO.
    I now find I am onable to “E” mail pay stubs as I could in QB 2009.
    I spent 6 HOURS with their INDIA tech support to no avail.
    Does anyone have any suggestion?

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    1. Sharon Randall Thursday, May 13, 2010

      Hi – I saw your question/comment about emailing pay stubs in QB 2010. Did you ever get that to work? I am researching upgrading to QB Pro 2010 only because the boss wants to get a new computer with Windows 7 on it, and the reviews say I need to have QB 2010 in order for some of the features to work. We email about 40 paystubs a week out of QB 2009. Hope you got yours to work. Pls let me know… Sharon

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      1. We would LIKE to email 70 paystubs but anyone using outlook express does not get the attachment. We use Microsoft’s Small Business Server to host our Email but I don’t think that has anything to do with it. Seems to be an issue btwn outlook/qb/outlook expess!

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  9. This year when I tried to email our “Accountant’s Copy” to our CPA (as I did successfully last year), I was unable to do so. Once I realized that for whatever reason teh email was unable to be sent, I tried to print the accountant’s copy, but was frozen out of doing ANYTHING with it! Has anyone else experienced this issue with QuickBooks Pro 2007?

    Thanks for any advice you may have!

    Pat

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