iMore Best 2014 Awards

iMore names 1Password 5 for iOS an App of the Year for 2014!

It isn’t every day that we have a chance at winning a best-of-the-year award from iMore. In fact, I am told that the opportunity comes only once a year.

And this year we won!

We are thrilled and thankful and just plain touched that iMore named 1Password 5 as the iOS Utility App of the Year for 2014, and 1Password 5 for Mac as a runner-up for Mac Utility App of the Year!

iMore reviewed and listed a ton of stuff for its awards this year, from apps to accessories for both iOS and the Mac. It’s a great list from a bunch of smart folks, so be sure to give the entire thing a look!

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Apple lists 1Password among the App Store Best of 2014

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We are amazed, humbled, and absolutely thrilled that Apple has listed 1Password among the App Store Best of 2014 for iPhone and iPad!

We’re listed alongside some incredible peers, too, from Storehouse to Xcom: Enemy Within, Litely to NYT Now. Apple sure does know how to pick ’em.

We are especially honored since v5 was both a major feature release and a huge step in taking 1Password for iOS freemium. We added some of our best features ever—like Touch ID and App Extension support for other apps— and we made 1Password 5 for iOS free to start using for new customers. Now, everyone can enjoy 1Password’s security and convenience, then unlock their full potential with a single, one-time in-app purchase.

We might be biased, but we agree that makes 1Password worthy of a Best App of 2014 spot. Thanks to you, our customers, for getting us here!

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Apps ❤ 1Password: Productivity

You’ve seen Apps that ❤ 1Password to help you stay secure while socializing and keeping up with the news, but now it’s time to get to work.

We’re seeing a great number of iOS Productivity apps add 1Password support, and we are truly thankful! Turns out our iPhones and iPads can’t just be for cat GIFs and Yo-ing each other. Apparently we actually have to, like, do stuff with them.

Now you can do stuff with these apps more quickly and securely by logging in and creating accounts with 1Password and Touch ID!

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Apps ❤ 1Password: News

It can be tough to stay in touch with all the news outlets, blogs, and just plain great stuff that’s important to you. Thanks to these iPhone and iPad apps that ❤ 1Password, you can log in securely and get to reading, scrolling, and favoriting faster than ever before.

From podcast clients to information curators, bookmarking services to news readers, these are all great ways to stay informed. With their new 1Password integration on iPhone and iPad, you can stay safe online with strong, unique passwords, yet log in quickly thanks to 1Password, Touch ID, and a single tap.

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Apps ❤ 1Password: Social Networking

Our Apps ❤ 1Password page is growing by the week, so it’s about time we start highlighting these fantastic apps! Developers are adding support to their apps so you can quickly log in and, in more and more cases, even sign up for a new account with 1Password and Touch ID!

For our inaugural post I’d like to get social. It’s one of our most popular categories so far and has something from and for everyone, including Twitter clients, crowdfunding, and an app for meeting people to, you know, actually get social!

Check out the Social Networking Apps that ❤ 1Password category, and give them some love in the App Store!

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About iCloud changes in 1Password 5

iCloud borderless iconOne of the big changes in 1Password 5 for Mac and iOS is a brand new iCloud sync engine. This change is a huge, order-of-magnitude-improvement over what we had in 1Password 4, but it came at a cost. I would like to explain how we arrived at this decision.

Mac App Store and AgileBits Web Store

There are two versions of 1Password for Mac. One is available on the Mac App Store and the other is in our own AgileBits Store. For the most part, these two versions are identical. One major difference is that Mac App Store version of 1Password is sandboxed to satisfy the store requirements. Another big difference is the access to iCloud features. Starting with 1Password 5, only apps downloaded from iOS or Mac App Stores have access to iCloud.

Hey Siri, define “iCloud”

“iCloud” is a name that covers many different services and technologies. This umbrella name makes it difficult to talk about iCloud.

For Mac and iOS users, iCloud could mean:

  • Services that keep track of your iTunes Movies and Music purchases
  • Services that keep your application data and iPhone backups
  • iCloud.com
  • And more: apple.com/icloud

For developers, iCloud could mean:

  • a low-level API that is used to read and write files to the local iCloud container folders
  • a document-based API that is used to store documents for apps like TextEdit or Preview
  • an API for apps using Core Data framework
  • new CloudKit API
  • More information is here: developer.apple.com/icloud/index.html

1Password 4 was using the low-level API tied to the local iCloud container folder. It is similar for both Mac App Store and iOS apps. Because the local container folder was available to all apps on Mac, our Web Store version of 1Password could also use iCloud for syncing.

History

Here is a short history of iCloud and 1Password:

  • 2011: iCloud introduced in iOS 5
  • 2012: iOS includes many fixes and new APIs in iCloud. 1Password 4 for iOS 6 (finally!) adds support for iCloud
  • 2013: 1Password 4 for Mac is out with iCloud support
  • 2014: iCloud gets completely re-implemented and reintroduced as CloudKit and iCloud Drive.
  • One-time migration of user data is performed when upgrading to iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite. 1Password 5 for Mac and iOS now use CloudKit

1Password 4 and iCloud

From the developer’s perspective, the original iCloud was pure magic. To sync with iCloud, the “only” thing that the app had to do was to save its files into a special folder and the operating system took care of the rest. The files were magically transferred between all computers and devices.

When the magic worked it was great. When it didn’t, it could be frustrating because there was no way to tell why.

Over time, after dealing with the problems we “learned” and made defensive changes in the app. For example, after initially syncing to iCloud, 1Password would show a message that the data will be available on other devices “in a few minutes”, even though we had no way to tell when it would actually happen. If you were setting up a new device and downloading a lot of data, it would take hours for your 1Password data to appear.

1Password was not the only app affected by iCloud issues:

There is no doubt that these issues triggered a major change in iCloud and the introduction of iCloud Drive and CloudKit. Unfortunately, it seems that iCloud Drive might have inherited some of the issues.

CloudKit

In 2014, Apple announced CloudKit, available exclusively to apps in iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite. It is a simple and elegant network API that allows apps to store data remotely on Apple servers. The biggest difference from iCloud is that there is no magic. Instead of writing the files locally and then waiting for them to magically appear on other devices, the app simply makes a request to update its data on the server. It does require developers to write more code, but the end result is a hundred times better.

CloudKit is very fast, efficient, and makes it easy to detect and troubleshoot errors. CloudKit is predictable. 1Password now knows if the item was successfully updated on the server and is available to other devices. If the operation fails, the app now gets a detailed error message explaining why it happened, be it a network error, a downed server, no space available, or the user was rate-limited.

We don’t have to guess when something goes wrong anymore, and we no longer have to tell our users to perform a set of magic steps hoping that some of them would trigger iCloud to work. CloudKit solved the problems we had with the old iCloud.

Other advantages of CloudKit include:

  • CloudKit stores data as records instead of files. It allows apps to perform partial record fetches and updates that make syncing more efficient and do not force dowloading or uploading an entire file.
  • Remote CloudKit database supports queries that allow 1Password perform syncing faster compared to scanning a directory of files.
  • CloudKit supports “server change tokens”. They are used by 1Password to quickly test for changes made on other devices.
  • 1Password on both Mac and iOS uses CloudKit Remote Push Notifications to perform syncing almost instantly when a change made on a remote device or Mac.
  • CloudKit provides a special record asset type (CKAsset) that is used to sync large attachments.

All these features made a huge difference. We tested CloudKit integration in early betas of 1Password 5 and we immediately became very excited about it. After using CloudKit in the beta for several weeks, we decided it is the best way for 1Password to support iCloud sync.

Conclusion

I hope this explains why we made a decision to switch to CloudKit. The performance and reliability of CloudKit, combined with issues of the old iCloud sync, made it impossible for us to not use CloudKit in 1Password 5.

Tips & Tricks: 1Password 5.1 for iOS

1Pi iOS 7 icon 1521Password 5.1 for iOS is now up in the App Store, and it sports some great new stuff based on your feedback. In fact, there’s enough for a bulleted list not much unlike this:

  • Touch ID now has 42% more touch, 27% more ID – We simplified our Auto-Lock settings for your Master Password and Touch ID to be clearer. Give Settings > Security a look.
  • Tags go mobile – Need more than folders? Folders just not your thing? Now you can add tags to items on iOS. Sub-tip: they’re comma separated.
  • iPhone 6- and 6-Plus-ified – Better graphics, even richer icons, and other tweaks for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus owners.
  • Custom keyboard control – Third-party keyboards are a big thing in iOS 8, but they don’t need to be in your 1Password (in short, some of them can transmit what you type to servers for, ideally, useful text-in-the-cloud stuff). We disable them by default, but you can turn them on in Settings > Advanced.

We hope you enjoy! If you get a minute, please spread some of your review magic in the App Store. They really do help!

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Touching on security and convenience

I remember watching Craig Federighi introduce the Touch ID API at WWDC this year. I remember thinking he was speaking directly to me, that Touch ID was clearly meant for 1Password. The next day, I ran out to buy an iPhone 5S, downloaded the new Xcode and iOS 8 betas, and added Touch ID to 1Password that night.

I remember how excited I felt the first time I was able to successfully unlock 1Password with Touch ID. Unlocking 1Password would never be the same.

Security and Convenience

A password manager is a combination of two occasionally conflicting concepts: Security & Convenience. First and foremost, a password manager must keep your data secure. But it also needs to give you quick, convenient access to your data.

The addition of Touch ID allowed us to take a huge step forward in convenience without sacrificing security.

Touch ID does not replace your Master Password. After unlocking with your Master Password, you can enable Touch ID. Once enabled, 1Password will present the Touch ID prompt instead of asking for the Master Password, allowing you to unlock using your fingerprint. Your data is always encrypted with your Master Password.

Thanks to Touch ID, you can now have the security of a strong, complicated Master Password with the convenience of unlocking with a fingerprint.

Turning on Touch ID

1P 5.0 iOS security settingsTurning on Touch ID in 1Password 5.0 is as simple as tapping Settings > Security and flipping the Touch ID switch.

When enabled, you can specify a “Request Fingerprint After” timeout, also known as an Auto-Lock timeout. This timeout sets how long 1Password is inactive before locking.

Those with sharp eyes may also notice a second timeout for the Master Password as well. Read on further to see how we are simplifying this for 1Password 5.1.

Now let’s take a quick look at how Touch ID was added to 1Password and what’s happening underneath the hood.

Adding Touch ID to 1Password

1P iOS Touch ID promptAdding Touch ID to 1Password started out as quite a simple task. The challenge was determining how to use Touch ID to access your 1Password data.

Apple’s Local Authentication framework made it easy to authorize a fingerprint, but the result is a simple success or fail. 1Password, however, needs your Master Password to decrypt your data after a successful authorization. To make this possible, 1Password stores your Master Password in the iOS Keychain when Touch ID is enabled.

Your Master Password is the most important password you have, and we take many precautions to keep it secure.

The iOS Keychain provides a way to store your Master Password in a secure place that only 1Password can access. The iOS Keychain item that contains your Master Password is never synced to other devices or backed up to iTunes or iCloud. It is also aggressively removed from the keychain whenever Touch ID authorization fails or if Touch ID or the device Passcode are disabled.

I hope this helps explain how Touch ID and your Master Password work in tandem to provide convenient, secure access to your data. Now, let’s talk about why adding Touch ID to 1Password turned out to be not quite so simple after all.

Improving Touch ID

1P 5.1 iOS Security settingsI had an awesome time adding Touch ID to 1Password and was overwhelmed by the hugely positive feedback that we received (no really, there was a ton of it). But it turns out that, instead of Touch ID, many people were seeing Master Password prompts far too often.

First, there was an issue in my code that caused the Master Password to be required at times instead of Touch ID. I’m happy to say this has been fixed in 1Password 5.1, which is strolling through App Store review and should be out soon.

In many cases though, the Master Password prompt was showing up in 5.0 exactly when it should, at least according to our confusing settings—we had Auto-Lock inactivity timeouts for both the Master Password and Touch ID.

In fact, even I had trouble explaining how the “Request After” and “Request Fingerprint After” settings worked together. After explaining (unsuccessfully) to so many people, I knew something had to change.

Starting in 1Password 5.1, there will be a single Auto-Lock timeout that works for both.

Auto-Lock specifies how long 1Password will wait before it locks automatically. To unlock 1Password again, you can use your fingerprint if Touch ID is enabled, otherwise enter your Master Password. Your Master Password will be required after a device restart or when Touch ID authentication fails.

Combined with Lock on Exit, this gives you a great deal of control over when, and how, 1Password locks.

Until Next Time

Touch ID has made a big difference in how I use 1Password and my phone in general. I hope it has for you as well, and yes—I can’t wait until Touch ID enabled iPads are available!

I do worry that Touch ID will make things so convenient that people will forget their Master Password. I’m tossing around the idea of requiring your Master Password once every 14 days or so. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

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Check out the first apps to support our 1Password App Extension for iOS 8!

Just in time for iOS 8, 1Password 5 for iOS has been unleashed in all its Touch ID, ready-for-iPhone-6-Plus glory. It also supports iOS 8’s brand new App Extensions feature, which means over 100 developers (and counting!) are building support directly into their apps for our 1Password App Extension, allowing you to unlock your vault with Touch ID, log in with a tap, and even update your app passwords!

In fact a number of developers shipped their 1Password-slinging updates alongside iOS 8 too, from a bank to community favorite apps for reading and work collaboration. Here’s our first rundown of the available 1Password-endowed apps so far, and keep an eye on our Apps that Love 1Password page for a major redesign soon!

Simple

Simple is a new kind of bank. It has no overdraft, minimums, or monthly fees, and it actually gives you great tools for savings and managing financial goals. Support is powered by human beings you can contact right inside this iPhone app, and you can instantly transfer money to (and from!) friends.

Simple integrated our 1Password extension so you can unlock your vault with Touch ID right inside the app and log into your account with a single tap. You can get Simple 2.1 with 1Password integration in the App Store now.

Slack

Slack is changing the way teams communicate. It’s real-time messaging for iPhone, iPad, and the web, combined with file storage and integrated with tools that teams are already using: Dropbox, Asana, Google+ Hangouts, Twitter, Zendesk, and many more. Conversations and files are archived, indexed, and instantly synced across multiple devices, making everything accessible through one simple search box.

You can find out more about Slack on its website, and get it on the App Store to see how Slack could help you be more productive and less busy.

Instapaper

Instapaper is the read-later service that lets you save anything and read it anywhere. You can save articles and other things on the web from any device, then grab this iPhone and iPad app to read those things later, even while offline.

Among plenty of other great new features, the new Instapaper added the 1Password extension so you can use Touch ID and log into your account with a single tap. You can pick up Instapaper 6.0 now in the App Store.

Retro

Retro is a beautiful Instagram browsing app for iPad. It supports multiple accounts, a Today widget for a quick glance at your feed, multiple themes, background updates, and much more.

With its latest update, Retro also gained the 1Password extension for that sweet Touch ID unlocking action and one-tap logging in. You can get Retro 2.2.1 for Instagram in the App Store.

InBrowser – Private Browsing

InBrowser is a web browser for iPhone and iPad with privacy at its heart. In fact, everything will be erased every time you exit InBrowser, including history, cookies, and sessions. You also get tabbed browsing, browser agent cloaking to avoid mobile sites, AirPlay, and more.

Considering InBrowser’s focus on privacy, it’s a good thing the latest version gained the 1Password extension. Now you can unlock your 1Password vault right inside InBrowser with Touch ID, log in with a tap, and leave no trace when you’re done. You can get InBrowser 1.55 in the App Store now.

Treehouse

Treehouse for iPad is “the best way to learn technology.” You can learn to build everything from websites to iPhone apps to web apps, or even to start a business. Over 1,000 videos, quizzes, and interactive code quizzes help you to learn and retain your new skills.

For its big upgrade, Treehouse now includes the 1Password extension so you can unlock your vault with Touch ID and log into your account with a single tap, or sign up for a new account with our Strong Password Generator! You can get learning with Treehouse 2 now in the App Store.

Paste+

 

Paste+ for iPhone is an interesting new breed of iOS 8 apps in that it is primarily a Today widget, and a useful one at that. When you copy something to your clipboard, Paste+ has lots of quick one-tap actions you can take with that thing, such as search it in Google, upload to Dropbox, share to social media and messaging, create reminders, make calls, and much more.

We’re thrilled to see that, for its 1.0 debut, Paste+ included our 1Password extension for login prompts. When you need to authorize Paste+ to access Dropbox, Twitter, or other services, you can unlock your vault with Touch ID and use 1Password to log in with a single tap.

You can get the first-ever version of Paste+ in the App Store now.

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1Password 5 for iOS how-to: Enable the extension for Safari and third-party apps

1P5 iOS App Extension sheet

1Password 5 for iOS is now available for iOS 8 and it. is. amazing. One of its best new features is an App Extension that lets you fill Logins directly in Safari and even third-party apps!

There’s just one thing you have to do: like all iOS 8 App Extensions, you have to manually enable the 1Password extension if you want to use it in Safari and other apps. It’s easy to do it, and we have a great support document that shows you how.

The simple version is that you just need to launch 1Password 5 first (and set it up if you never have), then tap the Action menu, scroll to the right of the actions list (the bottom one with black and white icons; Share extensions are on top), tap More, and enable it.

Then you can get on with filling Logins (and soon Identities and Credit Cards) right into Safari!