Reduce Password UX Misery

I wrote Typing on Glass about the difficulties of typing a password on a phone (tip for non-techies: UX = User Experience). A password of length 9 can take 18 taps on a phone, increasing the possibility of mistakes and repeated access tries that could possibly lock your account. Often a password is created on a computer keyboard and then used to login to an app or web site on a phone.

I have an idea for how to reduce the misery of typing a password on a phone. This works for a lot of current smartphones (iPhone, WindowsPhone, Android phones). When you create or change a password, keep your phone keyboards in mind. You can create a “strong complex” password that requires fewer taps on your phone to type it.

Create a Strong Password That is Easier To Type On Your Phone!

  1. Start with one or more lowercase letters
  2. One uppercase letter
  3. One or more numbers
  4. For WindowsPhone: One+ of @ # $ % & * ? ! (or other symbols/characters – these are just the easiest ones to access)
  5. For iOS: One+ of @ ! & # $ +
  6. For Android: One+ of ! @ # $ & * ?

You can also switch around some of this and still keep it easier to type, for example, start with one uppercase, then do lowercase letters.

Last night (July 13, 2013) in Palm Springs, CA at YxYY, I gave an Ignite talk about password user experience on smartphones. Here are the slides from that talk, demonstrating the process of typing a “strong complex” password on a phone:

Reduce Password UX Misery from Leanne Waldal at OTIVO, INC

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