Google has acquired a small startup called SlickLogin, which was working on a way to achieve password authentication through sound.
The three-person Israeli company only launched five months ago, but it’s already been poached by the big G. News of the acquisition has appeared on SlickLogin’s own website.
“Today we’re announcing that the SlickLogin team is joining Google,” reads the note from the three founders, “a company that shares our core beliefs that logging in should be easy instead of frustrating, and authentication should be effective without getting in the way.”
The concept behind SlickLogin is that a website seeking authentication would play a high frequency sound (inaudible to the human ear) through your computer’s speakers. Your smartphone would then pick up this tone, analyse it, and signal the website that you are indeed the person authorised to access the account.
SlickLogin itself had only been made available as a small, closed beta at the time of the acquisition, so Google is not purchasing a finished product here – rather the potential of a product and the talent behind it.
SlickLogin was envisaged as a possible secondary layer in the fiddly two-step authentication process, and the company has linked that to Google’s own work in the field:
“Google was the first company to offer 2-step verification to everyone, for free – and they’re working on some great ideas that will make the internet safer for everyone. We couldn`t be more excited to join their efforts.”