Your online accounts are much safer when you rely on more than only a password, and that's where two-factor authentication (2FA) apps come in. You can use them to create an extra layer of security for your accounts, requiring you to enter a one-time password (OTP) in addition to your regular credentials when you log in. That prevents hackers from accessing your account with a stolen password only.
As the default messaging app on many Android devices, Google Messages is an important tool for staying in touch with friends and family. The app has continued to work on expanding support for RCS and experimenting with handy new features. Now it looks like users will be able to find specific messages quicker than ever thanks to categories that sort messages into specific channels.
Whether you're making an online purchase or simply trying to log into your account, you're most likely going to be asked to enter a one-time code sent to your mobile number via SMS. Since these messages are useless a few minutes after being received, they create unnecessary clutter in your texts, unless you manually bother to tidy up and delete them. Thankfully, Google has a solution for you with its Messages app, as it's working on a way to automatically scrap these texts for you.
Both Android and iOS have a couple of solutions baked in to let apps automatically verify your phone number through a single-use passcode sent over SMS. Earlier this year, Apple proposed to standardize the format of these messages to make the process even more seamless. After joining hands with Apple over their contact-tracing tool, Google is now backing Apple's proposal to make SMS OTPs (one-time passcodes) a tiny bit more secure and easier to use.
Last year, a new "verification code autofill" setting appeared as part of a Play Services update that promised to plug the SMS-based 2FA gap for apps that use Android's snazzy SMS Retriever API for verification codes. In short, it would be another way to autofill SMS 2FA codes that might be able to work with any app, regardless of developer support. And based on user reports, the feature may be rolling out.