Firefox has announced that from December 13, 2021, support for the Lockwise password management app will come to an end. That means updates will no longer be provided via the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
Lockwise was launched in 2018, initially as Lockbox, and while Firefox is not exactly a leader in password management, many people have relied on Lockwise for managing and storing their passwords. Part of the popularity is Mozilla itself, which is a well-respected, open source organization. Trust is important when it comes to storing highly sensitive information such as passwords for all accounts.
Lockwise was sufficient for many people as it securely stored passwords and auto-filled them when needed, although the solution lacked some important features that are included in more accomplished password management solutions such as those provided by 1Password, Bitwarden, LastPass, and the other major players in password management.
When support comes to an end, current users of Lockwise will not be left high and dry. They will still be able to access their saved passwords through the Firefox desktop and mobile browsers, and Firefox says that the app could keep working after December 13 – it will just no longer be updated. The final versions of the plug-in are 4.0.3 for Android and 1.8.1 for iOS.
Android users will still be able to retain the autofill function provided by the app through Firefox 93 for Android. iOS users are the losers here, at least temporarily. While Firefox for iOS syncs saved Lockwise passwords, they can only be currently used inside Firefox. Mozilla says it will be providing updates later in December on how Firefox for iOS can be used as a system-wide password manager.
Lockwise is the latest casualty to come from Mozilla’s efforts to streamline its business and improve profits. Last year, the company laid off around 250 staff members – around a quarter of its workforce – as it focussed on the parts of the business that are making money.
The good news for disgruntled Lockwise users is there are several highly accomplished password management options available as a Lockwise password manager alternative, with the free-to-use offerings from Bitwarden and LastPass an ideal solution for the budget-conscious.