microsoftofficeaccountingMicrosoft is now completely out of the accounting software market, following Friday’s announcement that it is dropping all of its remaining Office Accounting products.

At one time it appeared that Microsoft was going to be a player in accounting software for small business. It created overlapping products – “Small Business Financials,” “Small Business Accounting,” “Microsoft Office Accounting” – and claimed to be fully committed to staying in for the long haul. By the end of last year, it had killed all but the Office Accounting line, and that was already looking a little shaky.

On Friday, Microsoft bailed out completely, essentially conceding that Quickbooks cannot be dislodged as the owner of the entire market for small business accounting. Quickbooks is quirky (oh, goodness, is it quirky), but now it’s even more clear that there’s no alternative to it.

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