According to senior program manager lead Anoosh Saboori, an iPhone can be used as either two-factor authentication or for full login if it has biometrics. This will help users log in to different computers in the office.
“They normally have the phone in their pocket, they have some kind of wearable on their arm, some of them might have the security fobs given to them by their company, and many of us carry a badge with us that is used to gain access to different physical locations,” said Saboori. “We wanted to leverage these devices as a way to knowing the user.”
Windows Hello on Android and iOS
Saboori then showed a demo of a proximity-based login with Phone, stating, “There are other solutions coming for iPhone too. More than one, but that is the closest one to shipping.”
The functionality comes through a partnership with RSA, but says Android solutions will be coming from other partners.
The focus seems to be on primarily on businesses. As such, Microsoft could choose to bundle the Android/iOS functionality as part of a security package or Windows Enterprise editions. This would cut it off from the general public, but may be the smarter move financially. We'll keep you updated on that as more information becomes available.
Saboori also mentioned some plans for the future. One of the goals for companion devices is proximity-based logout. Spending a certain time away from the PC will result in an automatic lock. This is something that would benefit all users and would result in an increase in physical security.
You can find more details about the keynote on the MyIgnite website.