Support for the Microsoft Authenticator app on Apple Watch has ended, but there is very little information as to why.
In a slightly ironic way, in the Apple App Store (opens in a new tab)the description of the latest update to one of the best authenticator apps available reads: “This update removes Microsoft Authenticator from Apple Watch.”
However, the alert also mentions that you can still mirror iPhone alerts to Apple Watch in the notification settings. But the fact is that the removal of the dedicated app has certainly made authentication of logins by wearable device users less convenient now.
Another app is coming
Microsoft Authenticator is one of the most popular authenticator apps that is used as a form of multi-factor authentication (MFA) or two-factor authentication (2FA) to add an extra layer of security to your accounts and devices.
The Apple Watch app was first introduced in 2018 and allowed you to authenticate your login details without having to unlock your iPhone.
Microsoft had initially announced the end of the application lifecycle (opens in a new tab) secretly in December 2022, burying messages in an Frequently asked questions (opens in a new tab) section on the company’s support page, quite ambiguously stating that “there will be no companion app for watchOS as it is incompatible with Authenticator’s security features.”
The IT giant has not explained what exactly these security features are and what makes them incompatible with watchOS.
However, this is not the first major app to be pulled from an Apple smartwatch. Instagram, Slack, Uber and Pokémon Go have ended support for their apps on the platform.
It seems that in many cases people simply did not use the app, and the notifications and alerts from their iPhone counterparts were enough for many.
- The authenticator is a great addition to your level of security, but it cannot replace the best password manager