QuickBooks is discontinuing their Desktop service
An earlier version of this article was first published on 14 December 2021
Late in 2021, Intuit announced that they had taken the decision to discontinue QuickBooks Desktop for UK customers. They stated that they would not be launching a 2022 edition of QuickBooks Desktop for the UK, but full support would remain available, until 31 January 2023 [later extended to 30 June 2023].
This ‘sunsetting’ plan obviously impacts thousands of customers in the UK who currently use QuickBooks Desktop, and the accountancy forums are currently full of comments from people who feel like they and their clients are being pushed into using a cloud platform unwillingly. However, love them or hate them, cloud platforms are here to stay and, despite the various foibles of the different platforms, they can offer far greater flexibility than desktop platforms (for the user and for the platform owner alike) and their capabilities are improving rapidly and will soon match or exceed those of the feature-rich desktop applications they are supplanting.
Why is this happening?
The rationale behind Intuit’s decision is that with all the “recent changes to accounting and tax regulations, and with more on the horizon” (alluding to MTD presumably), they are eager to ensure that their UK customers are able to remain compliant. This will be a good deal easier to do if they can support one cloud platform rather than having to regularly update multiple versions of what can be fairly old versions of the desktop software in circulation. QuickBooks Desktop will obviously be around for a couple of years still, but there is limited time in which to make alternative plans, as support from Intuit will no longer be available from the middle of 2023.
You may already have been affected
The discontinuation of QuickBooks Desktop has been on the cards for a while, and Intuit have already previously announced that various services will be discontinued. Since May 31 2021, for example, access to add-on services was discontinued for QuickBooks Desktop for Windows. This includes all versions of QuickBooks Desktop Pro, Premier, and Enterprise Solutions v18.
Since June 2021, users have been unable to access Live Support or any of the other Intuit services that can be integrated with QuickBooks Desktop, such as QuickBooks Desktop Payroll Services, Online Backup and Online Banking accessed through QuickBooks Desktop 2018 software.
For further details of Intuit’s discontinuation policy, read more at the QuickBooks website.
What are your options?
If you wish to move away from using QuickBooks Desktop – and the looming presence of MTD places something of an urgency on this decision – there are a number of options open to you. QuickBooks Online is an obvious alternative you may wish to consider, but just as relevant might be Sage Accounting or Xero. The three main players offer differing features and benefits, check them out or speak to an accountant who may be able to advise you on the best cloud platform for your needs. See also our own article about partnering with Intuit to offer FREE migrations to QuickBooks Online.
Moving to the cloud is far easier than you might think
Moving your accounting data with Movemybooks is a breeze. There’s no need to start again from scratch adding all your contacts, or spend hours inputting past years of data into a new accounting system. Just take up to 2 years of historic data with you (additional years can also be converted, up to a maximum of 12 extra years), and after converting with Movemybooks your customer and supplier details will be available to use, along with all transactions, balances and reports.
A conversion with Movemybooks is typically completed in just an hour or two, and they are often FREE – Xero and Sage will cover your fees and, since September 2022, Intuit will pay if you convert from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online (there is a modest charge of £180 + VAT to convert to QuickBooks Online from any other software).