Google Authenticator App Celebrate Millions of 2-step Verification Users

Google Authenticator for Android that helps generates 2-step verification codes on your phone is now updated and sports an improved look-and-feel, as well as fundamental upgrades to the back-end security and infrastructure that necessitated the migration to a new app. Google made 2-step verification available to all Google users in February of 2011, "since then […]

improved Google Authenticator app

Google Authenticator for Android that helps generates 2-step verification codes on your phone is now updated and sports an improved look-and-feel, as well as fundamental upgrades to the back-end security and infrastructure that necessitated the migration to a new app.

Google made 2-step verification available to all Google users in February of 2011, "since then millions of people around the world have chosen to use this extra layer of security to protect their Google Accounts and thousands more are signing up every day," Google blogged.

"2-step verification works by requiring users to enter a verification code when signing in using a computer they haven't previously marked as "trusted." Many users choose to receive their codes via SMS or voice call, but smartphone users also have the option to generate codes on their phone by installing the Google Authenticator app -- which help generate a valid code even when your phone isn't connected to a cellular or data network," Google explains,

Current Google Authenticator users will be prompted to upgrade to the new version when they launch the app. Or, download the Google Authenticator app from the Google Play.

And, if you aren't already a 2-step verification user, give it a try.

Here are step-by-step walkthrough installing the Google Authenticator app on Android and iOs Deveices:

Android devices

  1. Setting up the app
  2. If you haven't already, complete the SMS/Voice setup and enroll your account in 2-step verification using your phone number.
  3. On your computer, go to the 2-step verification settings page and click on Android.
  4. On your phone, open the Google Authenticator application.
  5. If this is the first time you have used Authenticator, click the Add an account button. If you are adding a new account, choose "Add an account" from the app's menu.
  6. To link your phone to your account:
    • Using QR code: Select Scan account barcode (label 1a). If the Authenticator app cannot locate a barcode scanner app on your phone, you might be prompted to download and install one. If you want to install a barcode scanner app so you can complete the setup process, press Install (label 2a) then go through the installation process. Once the app is installed, reopen Google Authenticator, point your camera at the QR code on your computer screen.
    • Using secret key: Select Manually add account (label 1b), then enter the email address of your Google Account in the box next to Enter account name (label 2b). Next, enter the secret key on your computer screen into the box under Enter key (label 2c). Make sure you've chosen to make the key Time based (label 2d) and press "Save."

    Android scan or manualAndroid barcode scanner promptAndroid manual entry
  7. To test that the application is working, enter the verification code on your phone (label 3) into the box on your computer next to Code, then click "Verify."

    Android verification code
  8. If your code is correct, you will see a confirmation message. Click "Save" to continue the setup process. If your code is incorrect, try generating a new verification code on your phone, then entering it on your computer.

iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad

  1. Visit the App Store.
  2. Search for Google Authenticator.
  3. Download and install the application.

Setting up the app

  1. iPhone verification codeIf you haven't already, complete the SMS/Voice setup and enroll your account in 2-step verification using your phone number. You can add the Google Authenticator app only after you've already enrolled using your phone number.
  2. On your computer, go to the 2-step verification settings page and click on iPhone.
  3. On your phone, open the Google Authenticator application.
  4. Tap the plus icon.
  5. Tap Time Based (label 1).
  6. To link your phone to your account:
    • Using QR code: Tap "Scan Barcode" (label 2a) and then point your camera at the QR code on your computer screen.
    • Using secret key: In the box next to Account (label 2b), enter the email address of your Google Account. Then, enter the secret key on your computer screen into the box next to Key (label 2c) and tap "Done" (label 2d).

    iPhone key entry
  7. To test that the application is working, enter the verification code on your phone (label 3) into the box on your computer next to Code, then click "Verify." The clock icon on your phone (label 4) will let you know how much time is left before the verification code expires and a new one is generated.
  8. If you're still having trouble, you might want to verify that the time on your phone is correct or read about common issues.

You can read this help center article for more installation options.