May 17, 2013

Make Password Management Easier on Android with These Tips

In the inaugural post for our series featuring questions asked by LastPass users, this week's question is:
"I would like a lot more detail on how to make the LastPass Android app work with apps that require logons and passwords. I love how LastPass works on my laptop and desktop machines; using it here has been second nature to me. But I find myself logging onto my phone's LastPass app and cutting and pasting. Surely there's a better way?" - Keith K.
A great question, since the mobile experience is inherently different than the desktop experience. Because the mobile platforms are more closed, we can't integrate into the mobile browsers and apps as easily. This means that LastPass can't "see" into those other browsers and apps in order to fill your data there, unless you're using Dolphin Browser or Firefox Mobile on Android, for which we do offer addons. The LastPass app does allow you to login, view your stored data, and tap an entry to launch it within the LastPass app, where LastPass can fill the data and you can login to your sites.

Copy-paste is one option for logging in on other apps or browsers. On Android, if you long-tap on a site entry in your LastPass app vault, you can choose the "copy username" or "copy password" options to then multitask back to another browser or app and paste there.There are, however, a few other alternatives on Android that may be more useful for your workflow.

LastPass Copy Notifications


There are two ways to activate the copy notifications:
  1. In the LastPass app, tap and hold on a site entry and select "copy notifications"
  2. The username and password fields will appear as notifications in your phone's notification bar
  3. Drag down the bar to tap the "copy username" notification
  4. Paste your username in the browser or app where you want to fill your data
  5. Repeat those copy-paste steps with the password
You can also set the "copy notifications" feature to be the default action for tapping your site entries in the LastPass app vault. In the vault, tap your device's "menu" button, select the "More" menu, then open the "Preferences", and set the "Default site action" to "Copy Notifications".

LastPass Input Method


The LastPass input method allows you to switch to a LastPass keyboard that has a special button for autofilling your passwords in other apps or browsers. To get started:
  1. Enable the LastPass Input method in your LastPass app Preferences menu
  2. Multitask to the app where you want to login
  3. Long-tap in the app field, and select "Input"
  4. Tap the LastPass option to switch your keyboard
  5. Tap the asterisk button in the keyboard to display any matching logins
  6. Select the entry you want to use, and submit the login for the app
You can then switch your keyboard back at any time by long-tapping in a field, selecting the Input option, and switching to the default or another keyboard.

We continue to look at ways to expand the feature set on mobile, and to expand integration with other browsers and keyboards (for example, we're waiting on Google to provide support for addons in Chrome mobile). Hopefully these tips will help improve your workflow on Android!

Have a question for the LastPass team? Let us know in comments or send us a note at marketing[at]lastpass.com. If we choose your question, you'll get a Tshirt!

47 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. last pass is gay now they hacked it and hackers know how to hack using it , i really want to . old lastpass isn't gay like the hacked lastpass that can't hack.

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    2. Using the word gay derogatively isn't only uncool and childish, it also devalues any point you might have been trying to make.

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  2. The input method would be 1000 times more useful if it weren't so deeply unfriendly to use. LastPass tries to match the app URL to a password, but this only workds a fraction of the time. All the other times I have to search through the LastPass password list to locate the right one. I have *hundreds* of passwords in LastPass, and the the password list as shown in the "keyboard area" of the sceen is *tiny*. Which means scrolling... and scrolling... and scrolling forever. Yes, I break my accounts up into groups, but I'm not always sure which group a password is in, and some of the groups are still really, really big.

    As a result, I wind up almost never using the input method. Some suggestions for making it more useful:

    1. Make it easier to find the password I'm looking for from within the input method. Give me a pop-up window with find-as-you-type or something like that.
    2. REMEMBER THE LAST ACCOUNT CHOICE. It is *exasperating* when I scroll all the way down to the account I'm looking for, hit "fill" for the username, then move on to the password field... and have to scroll to find the account all over again.

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    1. Good suggestions. I am sure +Lastpass will pick up on the suggestions soon.

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    2. Thanks for the great feedback, Avdi, I've noted these for the development team.

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    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    4. If you find that it is hard to manage a large number of passwords, try breaking your password list down into sub-folder categories such as "Shopping, Programs, Games, Email, Banking, Credit Cards" and so on... You don't have to have one giant folder that holds all your passwords and it helps allot for me when I am searching.

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    5. Always listen to Avdi Grimm +1

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    6. Yes! If it could remember your choice not just for the current username/password entry but also for future uses of that app, it would be fantastic. As it is, I find it significantly faster and easier to open up the Lastpass app, find the site I want, add copy notifications, and paste them in manually than to use the input method.

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  3. I was test driving my paid subscription but, if this kind of intelligence is built around the fact that chrome on android does not do extensions, I might be extending my subscription forever :)

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  4. How secure is the copy-paste method? Can a third party app get this info unconditionally? What happens after the paste, does the system purges the data, or any application can read it from the buffer?

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    1. I don't think it is secure at all, I think any app has access to the clipboard.

      LastPass, what's your take on this?

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  6. I'm using LP for two years now as a premium user, and I'm really disapointed by the lack of support/update for the Android App. Especially the keyboard which is the uglyiest in Android ecosystem. LP for Windows 8 have been updated/improved many times while nothing for LP Android.

    Just try to tap a password with the keybord, switching from numeric to alphabetic keyboard each time in a 10 caracters lenght psw is annoying as hell!

    Using the notification bar to copy ID and PSW isn't secure, after copying them and login to the site we want to enter, the ID and PSW stays in notif bar!

    Hope I'm clear enough!

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    1. Thank you for the honest feedback, I've passed these along to the development team for their consideration. The Holo design is on our radar, so we do hope to incorporate improvements to the Android app in the nearer future.

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    2. "Using the notification bar to copy ID and PSW isn't secure, after copying them and login to the site we want to enter, the ID and PSW stays in notif bar!"

      Swipe them away. Or use the "Clear" button to clear notifications.

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    3. What David said, this is what I do.

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    4. You can save a couple swipes by copying the password first; then when you copy the username, first swipe the password away. The username will still sit in the notification bar to be cleared at your leisure, but it's less important that it be wiped right away.

      Still need to clear the clipboard contents though.

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  7. I Agree with Avdi, but it works great for me. I usually just ending up using copy notifications.

    What I would like to know if there is a search option when using the input method, or can you extend the list to be the whole screen? I also want to know when and if the LastPass Wallet is coming to Android? I used it a bit on my cousins iPhone that I fixed and liked the idea, but hate the phone. When I saw a similar product from a different company I used it and it comes highly regarded, but not as secure, so that app was uninstalled quickly. Just thought I would ask. Thanks! Love the product, except that one day it just would not let me login to the extension, and I was freaking out at work, but quickly fixed!

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    1. These are great suggestions and something we will look at incorporating, we're overdue for an update. Thanks!

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  8. Android users are last one that LP take care of. We are in middle of 2013 and not even a holo dark theme have been added! How can you not think that this ugly grey keyboard is outdated ? Comparing with LP for Iphone or Win8 make me think that you really don't give a damn about android user who pay 12euro a year!

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    1. Holo is on our radar, thank you for the feedback.

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  9. The second suggestion never works for me - for example, I tried this with the box.com app but when I open up the suggestions from the lastpass input box it says there are no matches even though I have an entry titled 'box.com'. Very frustrating.

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    1. Are you able to tap the "groups" option to then search for the login?

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  10. Have you considered providing password filling functionality via a jailbroken app on iOS or a root-required app on Android? Obviously this is a last-ditch resort, but the mobile vendors are forcing the issue.

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  11. by far the best experience I have had can be had with Firefox.


    Install Firefox for android

    Install Lastpass addon in Firefox.


    No more copy pasting.

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  12. I've been using Copy Notifications for awhile. I can't seem to get the Input Method to work. For example, I pulled up my Amazon app. When it asked for password, I tried holding down for a long tap. It just offered to paste. I had previously enabled Lastpass input method, to which it took me to a system setting when checked the box. Both Google Voice typing and LastPass are checked (not Android AOSP). Is there something I'm doing wrong?

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    1. Same exact problem. Nexus 4 with 4.2.2.

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  13. Never understood the input method. Tried to use it in chrome. Is it me, or is it just utter useless at matching sites? It never finds a match.

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  14. partner with swiftkey or similar and intregrate lastpass with a proper keyboard app...

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    1. Doubt it will ever happen since it would require support from both sides, but SwiftKey + Lastpass would be incredible.

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    2. I agree that it is a pain to switch keyboards back and forth, but a LastPass dedicated keyboard has its advantages:
      - oriented for password entry, not fast typing
      - no prediction (and passwords saved in the dictionary)
      - LastPass specific controls

      Maybe an easier way to switch keyboards, if at all possible?

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    3. This would be fabulous! Currently I rely exclusively on browsers with extensions (Firefox & Dolphin) but I would welcome more choice and all other methods are just too cumbersome to use regularly.

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  15. Thank you for these AWESOME Android tips! It saves me time now!

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  16. Maxthon's a great browser for Android. Is there any compatibility with this or any planned?

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  17. The "Input Method" does not work for me as described above and in the "LastPass input method" section of the user manual.

    With LastPass keyboard options enabled in both Android device settings and LastPass preferences, long pressing a login input field does not present the "Input method" option, only "Paste" (leftover crumb on clipboard). I can only switch keyboards by setting the desired keyboard as the default in android device settings.

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    1. Hi Mark, I use the notification menu, drag it down when your keyboard is showing en you can select a keyboard there.

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  18. How much longer for improved Android UI (HOLO) ?

    I have been holding to buy it until you improve the design. I have made a choice if a company does not care for it's users than don't pay them until they do...

    Last Pass is absolutely wonderful but this negative attitude about Android is unacceptable which is the biggest platform on the planet.

    Lastpass has a decent app on a platform like Windows Phone which no one uses but ignores Android which has the largest number of users.

    I hope Google provides LP functionality so that the user's don't have to rely on LP since it does not care about Android...

    ReplyDelete
  19. How much longer for improved Android UI (HOLO) ?

    I have been holding to buy it until you improve the design. I have made a choice if a company does not care for it's users than don't pay them until they do...

    Last Pass is absolutely wonderful but this negative attitude about Android is unacceptable which is the biggest platform on the planet.

    Lastpass has a decent app on a platform like Windows Phone which no one uses but ignores Android which has the largest number of users.

    I hope Google provides LP functionality so that the user's don't have to rely on LP since it does not care about Android...

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    Replies
    1. We can confirm the redesign is in the works, we do hope you continue to use LastPass and enjoy the update when it's out in the near future.

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    2. I'm glad I found this blog. Thanks for the updates I'm excited to see what is in store for the new versions of lastpass.

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  20. Amber, have you got a date for when the redesign will be rolled out? There must be some sort of timeline? Seems this has been going on for most of this year.... Surely it's a priority? Cheers

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