Google has started switching to passkeys and finally leaving the old passwords behind. The search giant has rolled out its first passkey support to Android devices and Chrome. It aims to give users and developers early access to the new security tool. Learn how to set up and use a passkey to log in to websites or apps on your smartphone and computers.
Passkeys, described on Google’s developer blog, are now enabled for users and developers on Android and Chrome. A passkey replaces a password when you sign in to websites and apps. Compatibility with the latter is yet to arrive later this year via the native API, though. At the same time, developers can start integrating Passkey into their sites starting today.
How a password works and why it is better than a password
Password has a familiar interface to using passwords to manually (or auto-fill) login to apps and websites on a smartphone or laptop. It’s safer and faster than traditional passwords that need to be typed and remembered.
Instead of the user generating the passwords by combining letters, numbers and characters, the task is done by the device. These generated passkeys are stored in the device. Depending on the provider, it can sync these keys to its own cloud or system for backup purposes if you lose access to the device.
Cross-platform: Passkey works with different operating systems and browsers
Since the password is built on the same industry standards, there is support for cross platforms. An Android device can be used to log into a website on another Mac or a browser running Windows. Alternatively, an iOS device can be used to access a page on the Chrome browser.
Apple started implementing its own passcode for iPhones and Macs last year. It uses iCloud Keychain to sync user passwords. Similarly, Google says that all passwords created on Android devices and computers are securely synced with Google Password Manager to prevent your phone from being locked if you lose it.
How to create and use a passkey on an Android smartphone
Creating the password is much easier than choosing your own password and then remembering to use it on another device. Passkey generation for Android and Apple devices is done in two steps.
Here’s how to set a passkey for any active websites and apps or services:
- Create passkey information via Google Account.
- Use screen lock, fingerprint or Face ID to authenticate.
How to use a passkey when accessing services, pages or apps:
- Select the password.
- Log in using screen lock, fingerprint or face (smartphone).
On the other hand, using the passkeys on computers or different browsers is done by scanning the QR code provided by the page or app. But we don’t rule out the possibility that this method could be improved in the future. By verifying the request on the device with biometrics such as facial or fingerprint scanning.
What are your thoughts on replacing passwords? Do you still think there might be major security holes in it? Let us know your answer in the comments – we’re listening.