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Want to avoid taxing time? U.S. Cellular encourages you to app-ly these tools

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More than 43.6 million Americans prepared and e-filed their own income tax returns in 2013, up 4 percent from the year before, according to the IRS. However, complicated forms, looming deadlines and stacks of paperwork can discourage some from tackling their own taxes and getting their refund fast.

But there is a way taxpayers can app-ly for assistance. Smartphones, tablets and apps simplify this taxing chore. Over a 4G LTE network, they allow people to complete, file and manage their 2013 tax return in a quick and easy fashion before the IRS's tax filing deadline of April 15. After all, a third of smartphone users said their smartphone helps them feel more in control of their finances.

Mobile devices such as the iPhone 5s and iPad Air can help you get answers to your tax questions, file your return and track your refund from anywhere.

U.S. Cellular recommends the following apps to help streamline your tax preparation process:

IRS2Go, the official IRS app, gives you access to tax planning and preparation tips and connects you to the IRS via YouTube, Twitter and Facebook for updated information on tax law changes, initiatives, products and services. You also can track a tax refund through this secure system.

TaxAct Central makes it fast and easy to complete, file and track your taxes. It features a handy checklist to help you efficiently gather necessary information, a Help Center to answer tax-related questions, calendar with deadlines for annual, quarterly and monthly filing and daily tips about a variety of tax issues.

TurboTax SnapTax allows you to snap and tap, then complete the E-file process in as little as 10 minutes. Taxpayers can snap a photo of a W-2, answer simple questions and E-file securely from their smartphone or tablet. Users can download the app for free and then they can file federal or state taxes directly from their device for $14.99.  

MyTaxRefund by TurboTax tracks what you are most concerned about your tax refund. This free app monitors the status of federal and state returns. You also can see whether refunds are pending, accepted or rejected and track the timing of a refund, so you have a better idea when your check or direct deposit will arrive.

To help businesses stay on track throughout the year, Concur keeps track of expenses and allows business professionals to stay productive while on-the-go. Large and small businesses can easily track business travel and manage expense reports with this free app. Concur also photographs receipts and edits expenses, imports data from credit cards, keeps track of receipts and allows you to approve and submit expense reports.  

You can also come by a free Device Workshop at U.S. Cellular to learn more about utilizing all that your smartphone has to offer to manage your taxes. U.S. Cellular's next Device Workshop is on Saturday, March 15 from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. at 403 Wilson Street in Brewer and Saturday, March 22 from 8 to 9 a.m. at 33 Mid Mall Boulevard in Bangor. Device Workshops are free and open to the public.

4G LTE service provided through King Street Wireless, a partner of U.S. Cellular. LTE is a trademark of ETSI.

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