Google tests a new autofill feature for SMS 2FA codes

RCS chat
RCS chat (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google is testing out an auto-fill feature for SMS One-Time Passwords (OTP).
  • This lets OTP fields automatically pull in verification codes from the texts sent to the Messages app.
  • It's enabled on beta builds of the Android Messages app.

Google is working on a new Android Messages feature that'll make entering two-factor authentication (2FA) and OTP codes much simpler, and it appears to be rolling out now (via Android Police).

Currently, Google already offers a means of easily copying codes from the Messages app notification to make entering them as simple as two taps. Upon getting an SMS with a verification code, the 2FA code is displayed with the option to copy it and you can paste it into the field of your choice. This new method goes a bit further. Once an SMS OTP is received on our handset, the Messages app will retrieve it from the SMS and suggest it as an autofill option in the OTP field much in the same way Google already does for regular passwords.

Autofill SMS for 2fa being shown

Source: Android Police (Image credit: Source: Android Police)

Like said above, it currently appears to be rolling out on some devices, though I haven't been able to personally verify it. As per Android Police, it works with at least Play Services version 20.04.12 and Messages version 5.5.096. It's not a guarantee as it is likely a server-side switch, but those are pretty much the minimum specs. You needn't have Messages as your default Messaging app either for this to kick off, it appears, though it still displays it as the autofill service.

Like with Google's other deployments, you should see it in a matter of weeks if not days, if you're running beta builds of the Google Messages app.

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Michael Allison