Google took to the official Chrome blog today to highlight two new features making autofill forms better. For clarity, these are the features that allow the browser to automatically detect and fill in some forms in the browser. Autofill features have been a mainstay staple for Chrome for quite some time. But now, the feature is going to be both more secure and more convenient than ever. Particularly on Android.
What are these new Chrome Autofill features?
The first and arguably most impactful of the new Autofill features for Android isn’t necessarily anything new. It’s already been available on Windows and Mac but will only just be shipping to Chrome for Android. Namely, that’s biometrics-based credit card confirmation for those who opt to save credit cards to their Google account.
Previously, the information stored in the Google Account could only be auto-filled after users verify the security code — or CVC — of their card. The credit card information is only stored in the Google Account. So Chrome only gains access after verification. Now, users will be able to use biometrics such as a fingerprint, to grant access. For those who turn on the feature, CVC verification will only be needed once. After that, a fingerprint can be used.
Biometrics, like credit card details, aren’t stored in Chrome and the browser users W3C standard WebAuthn to securely enroll the authentication.
Secondary to that, Google is releasing a new UI for form autofill features in Chrome. Referred to by the search giant as “touch-to-fill,” that takes the form of a card-style dialog box. The box appears at the lower-half of the Chrome UI on Android and offers up accounts saved for whatever site users are on. That’s if there’s an account saved. Otherwise, it will offer to save them.
The details are only presented on legitimate sites to reduce and prevent phishing and, Google says, can’t be tricked by fake front page UI. The new UI provides the option for sign-ins to work as one-handed operations. They only require a simple account selection and a tap on the “continue” button. The details are presented in an easier-to-read-format, placed right where users’ thumbs will naturally be.
When are these features coming?
For both biometrics payment verification and account logins, Google says the new Chrome features are close. But that doesn’t mean they’ll be hitting everybody right away. Instead, they’ll be arriving in “the coming weeks.”