By now, you probably know what two-factor authentication (2FA) is. If not, let’s explain what it does. 2FA adds a little extra layer of security when you log into an app. It does this by sending a code to your phone via SMS after you first try to log-in using your account username and password. It prevents someone from breaking into your account by taking a lucky guess at your password. Why? Because it means that the bad actor has to have your phone in his hand if he is going to see the code that will allow him or her to break in.
Google’s 2FA prompt for Android gets an update that includes Dark mode and more
You should also know what Dark mode is by now. If not, follow along. In Dark mode, instead of using black text on a white background, the screen shows white text on a black background. Both iOS and Android offer system-wide Dark mode with a simple tap. At night time, or in a dark room, the usual white background can strain the eyes. As a result, Dark mode can help save your eyes from issues related to strain.
The 2FA Prompt, at right, adds Dark mode following an update
Additionally, if you’re rockin’ a phone sporting an AMOLED display, using Dark mode can save you some battery life. That is because AMOLED screens have their own source of backlight unlike LCD. As a result, creating the color black on such a screen is as simple as turning the pixels off in the background. Since Pixels that are turned off do not create a draw on the battery, using Dark mode can be a battery saver. Also, some people (like yours truly) simply prefer the look of Dark mode. If that seems strange to you, so be it.
Google has updated the prompt that it sends out to your device when you try to sign in to an app using 2FA. This prompt, which notifies you that someone is trying to sign in to one of your apps, asks if that someone trying to log-in is you or a bad actor. The prompt gives you two answers to choose from, “No, it’s not me,” and “Yes.” Both now are capitalized correctly instead of being in all capitals, and are enclosed in a smaller sized box. On the updated version, Google also added an orange “X” to denote the box you need to tap if someone is trying to break into your account. The box you tap if it is you trying to use 2FA to enter the account now features a green check mark. Other changes include a centered Google logo at the top of the screen, and the use of Dark mode.
If you take a look at what the screen looked like prior to the update, you can understand why it is was so important to offer it in Dark mode. When not in Dark mode, this page mostly consists of a blinding white background that looks like it can melt your retina. Apparently not all Android users have received the updated version of the prompt on their handset at this time. If you have yet to see the new Dark mode 2FA prompt on your phone, there is no need to have a hissy fit and send a message to Google saying how disappointed you are. After all, Google has its own problems that it needs to work on such as updating its iOS apps. That will set off requests from Apple for the information it needs to complete adding the App Tracker Privacy Labels on its listings inside the App Store.
To turn on system-wide Dark mode on your iPhone, go to Settings > Display & Brightness and select “Dark.” On Android 11, go to Settings > Display and toggle on or off Dark theme.