Tuesday, May 3, 2022 [Tweets] [Favorites]

1Password 8 for Mac

Dave Teare:

We created an entirely new design language, code-named Knox, to unleash the power and productivity we’ve been dreaming of – all while preserving the heart and soul of 1Password. 😍

[…]

Quick Access is a floating panel that is always available, giving you access to all of your 1Password data, wherever you need it. Quick Access is fully keyboard-optimized, and it’s smart, too, suggesting the most relevant logins for the active application.

[…]

1Password can now fill into Mac apps like Zoom, Spotify, and the App Store, and also other places like Terminal and system prompts. 🤯

They call this Universal Autofill. PasswordWallet has long had a similar feature, which works by simulating keystrokes. This is much better than Copy/Paste because it can Tab between multiple fields and because it doesn’t expose your password to the clipboard. It sounds like 1Password is taking this to the next level because it will know which app you are in and actually recognize which field is which. I’m not sure how important this last bit is, because apps tend to focus the right field automatically, but I love the idea of it.

Previously:

Update (2022-05-09): Ryan Jones:

Search doesn’t happen in-list now. It’s a separate field and you have to press CMD+Enter to view all results. 🤣

Dan V Peterson:

Doing it this way enabled a lot of functionality and removes some confusion we’ve seen around scope and “lost items”. We tried a few different approaches and this one seemed to test the best and satisfied the most use cases in our testing.

However, it’s inconsistent with other Mac apps.

Nathaniel Strauss:

Any chance you could offer a standard .pkg installer for 1Password 8? The custom installer looks cool, but doesn’t work for enterprise customers.

The current installer is what used to be called an “active installer,” a small download that installs an app that downloads that real app. Whatever happened to just dragging and dropping the app icon to install?

Reddit:

We’re the team behind 1Password 8 for Mac. Ask us anything!

mitchchn:

Sometimes people ask why large companies don’t make native desktop apps, even though they should have all the resources they need, even when indies seem to get away with it just fine. To me it’s obvious: the lack of mature, competitive tooling and the absence of a viable dev community have sealed the fate of this kind of development at scale.

[…]

The platform vendors who ought to set the example here are simply not doing so. Few Electron critics would cite the current generation of first-party, native apps for Mac or Windows as examples of what we should be doing instead.

See also: MacRumors, Reddit, Jason Snell.

Previously:

Update (2022-06-02): Curtis Herbert:

I genuinely don’t think they did the “wrong” thing, even though they are losing me as a customer. Sure it meant building enterprise software (🤮), but it’s better than laying off employees because Apple is chipping away at their customer base from one side and LastPass (who also raised a ton of money) is eating the base from the other.

But just ‘cause they didn’t do anything wrong doesn’t mean this outcome was inevitable. I personally think there is room, even in today’s market, for a smaller password management app. A business that could support 1-4 full-time people. Said app doesn’t have the audience of today’s 1PW, but that scale of app did exist in the beginning. The team just chose to grow beyond it.

[…]

Left unchecked you may stop worrying about building the best product, and you instead focus on building the best business. It is a subtle subconscious switch, but it’ll have massive impact on the product your customers use.

12 Comments

I'm curious how they managed to get this to work. Ordinarily I'd figure the Accessibility API would allow this, and they do say they leverage it, but that will fail in every single Electron app! And they explicitly say they support the likes of Spotify. How then are they able to figure out which text field is focused in the app?

Maybe they use the Accessibility API when available, and then guess and hope for the best with Electron apps?

It is the nicest app I'll never use again.

If they hadn't killed local storage, I wouldn't have wasted three weekends migrating to KeePass and would still be a paying customer.

Not sure why AgileBits decided to reuse the brand "Knox" from the old Mac app they acquired and later discontinued.

Joshua Ochs

How do they manage to talk design and system integration when they've rebased the program in the least-native thing since Java?

Beatrix Willius

A guy who is truly in love with himself:

"I absolutely adore our new design language. From the vibrant sidebar and unified toolbar to the typography and iconography, everything has been redesigned and recreated to feel right at home on macOS."

Eh, that happens for native apps - natively.

I’ve been beta testing and overall I like it.

The Electron-ness does show itself in several places though. Although memory usage is no worse than 1Password7, there are UI quirks everywhere: Some menus look very off (font, spacing, shadows). Scrolling is glitchy and worse of all has no bounce and the physics are all wrong. And searching does not do live filtering which is not an Electron problem but I view it as a big regression. There’s more of course.

Well, all of the above was with a beta. Let me go try the final version.

Yup. Well, sadly, it looks like the accessibility was downgraded in the process. This is particularly evident when creating new entries, so I guess I'm shunted to my iPhone for that. It's clear they tried, so I don't want to make this all about grievance, but still, Electron will do that.

@Bri

Electron has an option to provide Accessibility support on macOS. It is enabled in many apps but unfortunately not all of them.

Michael, since you’re using 1Password for passwords but iCloud for TOTP, how are you dealing with the overlapping UI elements in text fields since both show up and literally over each other?

@Sean I’m using PasswordWallet, which has no UI elements, and Apple Passwords.

> Whatever happened to just dragging and dropping the app icon to install?

We saw a few problems with App Translocation that some of our customers were hitting and their case the experience was truly terrible (I think you could still find Miguel de Icaza's thread on Twitter). The installer makes sure this never happens.

Also, the installer automatically select the correct Intel/Apple Silicon binary to reduce the disk usage.

>Sometimes people ask why large companies don’t make native desktop apps, even though they should have all the resources they need, even when indies seem to get away with it just fine. To me it’s obvious: the lack of mature, competitive tooling and the absence of a viable dev community have sealed the fate of this kind of development at scale.

Well, yes and no.

I'll grant that we've come to the point where Apple's, Microsoft's, etc. own frameworks are arguably not _sufficiently better_. (For Microsoft, on top of that, you have the frustrating dogfooding problem, where they want you to use their stuff like UWP, Windows App SDK, MAUI, etc., but then proceed to _barely use those_ themselves. At least Apple is fairly good in that regard.)

However, some of the problems the team ran into they wouldn't have had they gone the native path. Problems with App Translocation? Just use something like LetsMove and off you go. These are problems the respective community has already tackled, and using a cross-platform framework will only get you mimicry.

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