In the past few months I’ve been flooded with emails from people looking to migrate away from Neat Desktop for their receipts and document scanning and organization.
When you get one or two emails on a subject you assume it’s a coincidence. When it becomes dozens of messages, it’s time to see what is going on.
Neat Desktop Is Being Discontinued
Neat is getting out of the desktop software game, and that seems to have many people heading for the door.
Here is what they say in their support note:
Effective immediately, Neat will no longer continue developing feature enhancements, updates, and/or bug fixes for the versions of Neat desktop software listed below:
- Windows – Neat version 5.7 and all previous versions
- Mac – Neat for Mac version 4.5 and all previous versions
Neat has been developing their cloud system for quite some time, but until this year you have been able to continue using Neat on the desktop. Now they are pushing everyone to the cloud.
I asked one of my readers why they are switching, and here was the response:
Neat stopped their Legacy desktop support early this year. They are focusing and concentrating on their cloud-based application which gets very mixed reviews. In my opinion it’s not great.
I don’t have personal experience with Neat’s cloud service, so if you are a user I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below.
For those that don’t want to make the switch to Neat’s cloud, what do you do? This is especially an issue for those that rely on Neat’s receipt extraction functionality.
Option 1 – Ride Out Neat Desktop Until It Dies
This is the easiest option, but as new versions of the Mac and Windows operating system are released it will eventually become untenable. Sooner or later something is going to stop working, and since there is no support there isn’t much you can do.
Option 2 – ScanSnap Receipt
Many users (based on my email inbox) are making the jump to the Fujitsu ScanSnap.
Modern ScanSnaps come with the ScanSnap Receipt software that lets you scan, categorize, and export receipts to Excel or Quickbooks.
Neat users will find one big feature missing in ScanSnap Receipts – reports. Unfortunately ScanSnap Receipt doesn’t have the nice reporting feature that Neat does.
Option 3 – Mariner Paperless
The closest software package to Neat is Mariner Paperless. It has receipt extraction, exporting, and reporting.
It has been quite a while since a major upgrade, but at least it is updated for macOS Sierra and Windows 10.
How To Export From Neat Desktop
If you want to get your PDFs out of Neat Desktop, here is how to do it on Mac and Windows. You can then bring those PDFs into whatever other system you decide to go with.
What Are You Planning On Doing?
Situations like this highlight one issue with using a proprietary system for storing your documents. You need to know how to get them out if you ever need to, and it will probably be annoying.
Christopher Price has an excellent writeup about what he has decided to do. Make sure you read the article and the comments.
If you’re a Neat user, have you made the jump to their cloud service? If so, how do you like it?
If you’re not making the jump, what are you going to do now that Neat Desktop is DOA?
Please leave a note in the comments and share your experience.