Our password-free future just took a step closer. Apple has begin rolling out signing onto its online store can with a passkey instead of a password. The change allows shoppers to access the site with Face ID or Touch ID. The same is true for iCloud.com and Apple’s dev site.
However, the feature is still in testing so it’s not available for everyone. It requires a beta of iOS 17, iPadOS 17 or macOS Sonoma.
Passwords are coming to kill passwords
For many years, passwords were a necessary evil of computer use. They’re convenient but not very secure because they can be phished, stolen or compromised.
Apple, Google, Microsoft and others collaborated on an improvement: passkeys. These use biometric systems already built into phones and other computers to create a unique digital key. That digital key can then authenticate the user on websites that utilize passkeys.
Add Apple.com and iCloud.com to the list of sites that support passkeys. but in a preliminary way — as noted, the feature requires iOS 17, iPadOS 17 or macOS Sonoma, which are in beta testing.
But those who are running the pre-release versions can now sign into the online Apple store or the online version of iCloud with Face ID. Getting access to the site requires only a quick facial scan. Devs can access the Apple developer site with a passkey, too.
Google is already going ahead with the new security system. Apple is apparently waiting until autumn 2023 when its new operating system versions will be available to all.
For more on this tech, read Cult of Mac’s guide to how to join the awesome password-free future and use passkeys.