Technology Safari to support password-less logins via Face ID and Touch ID later this year
Safari 14 will let you log onto websites with your face or finger
It's an important step on the path to dumping passwords altogether. And it's time to fix passwords. Because we reuse them so much, hackers often can use one single password obtained through a data breach to mount assaults on many other websites, too. Passwords are hard to make up, hard to remember and hard to type, especially on phone screens. Password managers are complex and often suffer compatibility hiccups. © Apple; Screenshot by Stephen Shankland/CNET Apple will let you log onto websites with Face ID or Touch ID, a step toward banishing flawed password technology.
Safari 14, the version of Apple’s browser that will ship with iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur, will let you use Face ID or Touch ID to log in to websites built to support the feature. The functionality was confirmed the browser’s, and Apple has detailed how the feature works in a for developers. The functionality is built on the of the FIDO2 standard, developed by the FIDO Alliance. It should make logging into a website as easy as logging into an app secured with Touch ID or Face ID.
WebAuthn is an API that aims to make web logins simpler and more secure. Unlike passwords, which are often easily guessed and vulnerable to phishing attacks, WebAuthn uses public key cryptography and can use security methods like biometrics or hardware security keys to verify your identity. It’s a standard that individual websites need to add support for, but being supported by the stock browser in iOS has the potential to be a major boost for adoption.
Spotify's web player works with Safari again
In 2017, Spotify’s Safari web player vanished without any explanation. Users were forced to use another browser or the native Mac app. Now, just as mysteriously, Spotify has added Safari back to its list of approved browsers. After almost three years, loyal Safari users can finally listen to Spotify in the browser once again. It’s always been a little strange that Spotify didn’t work in Safari. Even Google’s music service works fine with the browser. Of course, the public beta of Apple Music’s web player is also compatible.Spotify made the change quietly and without any announcement. It was spotted by a Reddit user and reported by 9to5Mac.
This isn’t the first time Apple has supported parts of the FIDO2 standard. Last year’sfor physical FIDO2-compliant security keys with the Safari web browser, and with its accounts on iOS earlier this month. These security keys offer more protection for your account since an attacker would need physical access to your key to gain access to your account. Support for security keys also came to . However, Safari 14’s functionality should be a lot more seamless, relying on the biometric security that’s built into your Apple device rather than needing a separate piece of hardware in the form of a security key.
Apple's new tools can help developers port Chrome extensions to Safari
When Apple detailed macOS Big Sur earlier this week, it spent a lot of time talking about how it redesigned the desktop operating system to make it look more modern. The company also touched on upcoming enhancements to Safari, such as faster webpage loading times and enhanced privacy monitoring. But the one feature that will likely mean the most for Safari users is Apple's take on the WebExtensions API. The move promises to significantly increase the number and variety of plug-ins you'll be able to install if you use Safari as your primary web browser. And we now have a better idea of how they'll work thanks to a WWDC session spotted by TechCrunch.
The new iOS functionality is similar to what’s previously been added to Android., and the company later made it possible to log into some of its services in the Chrome browser on Android .
Apple’s devices have been able to useand as part of the online login process in the past, but previously, this has relied on using the biometric security to autofill previously stored passwords into websites. Once set up, WebAuthn can be used to bypass the password process, meaning it’s not vulnerable to the same kinds of attacks that can make passwords insecure.
Apple, whichearlier this year, joins a growing list of companies that are throwing their weight behind the FIDO2 standard. As well as the Google initiatives detailed above, Microsoft last year, and it started allowing users to security keys and its biometric Windows Hello security feature back in 2018.
Safari in macOS Big Sur will stream Netflix in 4K HDR .
MacOS Big Sur may be a worthwhile upgrade if you love to marathon TV shows. As 9to5Macreports, users have discovered that Safari in Big Sur will play Netflix videos in 4K with HDR, whether you’re using Dolby Vision or HDR10. You won’t have to switch to another browser just to see more than a plain 1080p image. The upgrade comes thanks to long-expected support for HEVC in Apple’s web browser. You’ll have to be picky about your choice of Mac if you want the full effect, either with the Big Sur beta or the finished release this fall. HDR is currently only supported with 2018 or later MacBook Pro models, 2018 or later Mac mini systems, the iMac Pro or the Mac Pro.