Microsoft Authenticator app launches for Apple Watch in public preview

Updated September 11, 2018: After a short preview period, the Apple Watch companion app is now available to everyone with the latest update to the Microsoft Authenticator app on iOS. The original story follows.

Microsoft Authenticator already has a presence on iOS and Android, and now it's preparing to expand to your wrist. Microsoft announced today that it is launching an Authenticator companion app on Apple Watch, allowing you to approve sign-ins without pulling your phone out of your pocket.

The app is currently available in a public preview via Apple's TestFlight program. Once set up, Microsoft Authenticator will relay notifications to approve logins to your Apple Watch. You can then approve sign-ins with a tap.

In terms of security, Microsoft explains that it still considers the watch setup to be a form of two-step verification because you have to unlock the Apple Watch with a PIN when you first put it on.

When you put the Watch on your wrist in the morning, you will need to unlock it. As long as you don't remove the Watch from your wrist and it stays within range of your phone, it will stay unlocked—so you don't need to provide your PIN again.

If you're curious, you can test out Microsoft Authenticator for Apple Watch with your Microsoft person, work, and school accounts by signing up for the TestFlight program now. As for a release timeline, Microsoft says it expects to release the app to general availability "within the next few weeks."

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