On the web, we have a host of user names and passwords we have to remember, whether for news sites or apps or Netflix. So Michael Thomas and Vahur Roosimaa of Los Angeles-based startup Scopely have hacked together PhoneID, which lets you login to websites without a username and password.
As its name would imply, PhoneID turns your phone into your identity. You don’t need plug-ins or widgets, just your phone. And it works on iOS, Android and Windows Phone, while keeping your Facebook account, email and phone number completely private. [Note: It turns out that TeleSign owns the trademarks to "PhoneID," as they have products under the same name, so Thomas and Roosimaa have decided to change the name.]
It’s simple to integrate for developers, as they just need a couple lines of code to integrate on the front end and one callback on the backend. Users scan a QR code on the site they want to go to and PhoneID logs you in automatically. The hackers see this working well with publications and news organizations — really any site that has login information you don’t want to take the time to remember.
Usually, this can be more complicated and platform-specific, but PhoneID wants to eliminate that hassle without the friction. Login to PhoneID to scan the code, and, bada bing, you’re there. If you’re on a new phone that PhoneID doesn’t recognize yet, you input your number, the application sends you an SMS to authenticate your phone, and you’re in.
It’s a nifty little hack, and the guys say they’ll be building out a landing page over the next few days. LaunchRock page here.
Chris Kelly, New Relic’s Developer Evangelist, actually saw PhoneID’s presentation and picked the company out as the “Best B2B App” at the Hackathon, which means that the guys won a new MacBook Pro with retina display and Thunderbolt and a free year of New Relic. When asked why they loved PhoneID, Kelly tells us that no one wants to focus on user name and authentication issues — end users or developers — but that PhoneID is making that easy and making it so that they don’t have to worry about. Making the experience easy on users.
Hackathon Demo below: