Google Launches Smart Lock, a Password Manager for Android

As is so often the case during Google I/O, there's a lot of news announced during the keynote on Day One, which often feels more like a marathon than a keynote, but some of the more interesting news that will impact how we work with Android in the future is often quietly buried to the pages of Google's Developer site. One such tidbit is that Google is revamping the way we interact with sign in forms on Android. A part of the new Google Identity platform is Smart Lock for Android, which is basically a secure password manager for Android that works with your Google account.

As TechCrunch have noted, Google have a whole new page on their Developers site dedicated to the new Google Identity platform and there's a small part devoted to Smart Lock on Android. Google themselves describe Smart Lock as "a password manager built into your Google account. It can automatically sign you into an Android app, and autofills credentials on websites viewed with Chrome. It removes the need to remember and type in password credentials." That part about Chrome gives users a good idea to expect, if you've ever looked up a password in the settings of the Chrome browser, you'll get an idea of what Google is doing here.

On the Developers page there are few Android apps used as an example, such as Netflix and Eventbrite. For a developer to add this to their app, Google has a quick guide to follow here. When an app leverages the Smart Lock API and Credential API, a user will be asked whether or not they wish to save their password with Smart Lock. Presumably, when they sign in on another Android device linked to the same Google Account they'll be able to retrieve the password without a hiccup. Netflix is also going to add this to their Android TV app, too and this could pave the way for easier sign ins across other TV-centric apps.

This all sounds great, and casual users will certainly enjoy this approach, but putting all your eggs in one basket is never that good an idea. Still, Google is said to be working on encryption for future rollouts, and we're sure the platform will get better over time. Developers can take a look at all the info at the source link below.

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About the Author

Tom Dawson

Former Editor-in-Chief
For years now I've had a heavy interest in technology, growing up with 8-bit computers and gaming consoles has fed into an addiction to everything that beeps. Android saved me from the boredom of iOS years ago and I love watching the platform grow. As an avid reader and writer nothing pleases me more than to write about the exciting world of Android, Google and mobile technology as a whole.