iXBRL vs XBRL: What are the Differences?

The term eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) is just a medium which points to the main objective of improving financial communication. This is a software that was developed to make the task of data compilation and sharing easier. We can also say that XBRL is simply an implementation of XML (extensible markup language). The difference is that this is specifically used for defining online data along with organizing it. The reporting standard is now shifted to iXBRL (Inline XBRL) from XBRL. This is just one of the updated regulations by SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission).

Major facts about XBRL


SEC has been using XBRL as the standard format for the task of business reporting since the year 2009. This standard is used for everything ranging from quarterly reports to registrations of various businesses. Standard taxonomies are used in this language and it is machine-readable. Any data present in XBRL can be easily converted into spreadsheets. The accepted accounting standards of one nation can also be simply converted into other nation’s standard irrespective of the fact that how different they are. Several modules of XBRL are developed over time.

Major facts about iXBRL


In the year of 2018, amendments were made SEC and they updated the standard as iXBRL. The main feature of iXBRL is that this language is a combination of XBRL along with EDGAR HTML. This language permits creation of data which is readable by both human and machine at the same time. When we look at various snippets and compare the two languages, we can realize the difference ourselves. iXBRL includes embedded tags which are used to give meaning to statements and figures. In UK it is necessary to do the filings using iXBRL.

How is iXBRL different from XBRL


Although one of the base differences between iXBRL and XBRL is the facts that iXBRL is a combination of XBRL and HTML, there are some other differences too. These differences are basically technical and involves HTML is a lot of segments. There are certain tags which were earlier used in HTML but are not longer valid. Earlier some of the tags needed separate closing tags according to the syntax, now there are some self-closing tags such as <hr>. There is a list of HTML attributes which are no longer in use.

Benefits of IXBRL


In the case of iXBRL, the filer has more control over the formatting and the presentation of the data. Even though human control is practiced in iXBRL, still the data remains machine-readable. Time is used effectively as a person can read both HTML and XBRL at the same time simultaneously. The risks of having major differences between the HTML and XBRL is eliminated and the task does not become a liability. A major amount of cost is also saved due to combination of the two languages used by iXBRL. The XBRL tagging is already valid for the use of SEC Previewer and no adjustments are required. Although XBRL was great, iXBRL just adds on to the benefits provided by XBRL.


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