When comparing password managers, it can be difficult to figure out which one is the best fit for your needs. We’ve cut through the noise by comparing these two companies according to five of the most important features. Remember that the best password manager for your needs depends on factors such as how many users it needs to support and whether you plan to buy for home or business use.
1. Security & Encryption
A good password manager protects your sensitive data from unauthorized access. We compared each password manager based on its security features, such as whether it uses two-factor authentication or end-to-end encryption to prevent hackers from accessing your private information. We also tested each tool to determine how well it performs when it comes to generating secure passwords. While some password managers allow you to use easy-to-guess passwords that put your data at risk, others offer added protection by requiring you to create strong passwords.
2. App Compatibility
With so many browsers and mobile devices on the market, it’s important for a password manager to be compatible with many platforms. We tested each tool to determine if it’s compatible with some of the most common mobile and desktop platforms, including Android, iOS, Windows, and MacOS. We also tested these password managers to determine if they’re compatible with Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, and other internet browsers.
3. Usability and Ease of Use
We compared the password managers based on their usability and tested both tools to determine if they support biometric logins. Biometric authentication adds an extra layer of protection by requiring you to provide a fingerprint or some other unique characteristic when you attempt to log in to a website or mobile app. This form of authentication is more secure than other methods because biometric credentials are difficult to replicate. Biometric authentication enhances security, and it makes it easier to log in to your accounts.
4. Password Sharing
If you plan to purchase a password manager for your family members or employees, you’ll want a tool that makes it easy to share passwords with the people you trust. We tested each password manager to determine how easy it is to share passwords for streaming services, online banking, and other shared accounts.
A good password manager combines the features you need with a price you can afford. We compared both tools based on their pricing levels and the number of users included in each tier.
We spent more than 10 hours testing Bitwarden and 1Password to see how they compare with each other based on the five most important features. The breakdown is below.
Bitwarden protects your data with end-to-end encryption, which prevents unauthorized access to your master password. PBKDF2, an AES-256 cipher, salting and hashing provide extra protection against hackers who want to gain access to your accounts. PBKDF2 prevents brute-force attacks by making it difficult for anyone to guess your master password. Hashing is used for authentication, and salting adds characters to the end of your password to make it even more difficult to guess. Bitwarden also offers two-factor authentication, which makes your account more secure by requiring you to provide two pieces of information to prove your identity before you can log in to an account.
Like Bitwarden, 1Password uses end-to-end encryption, PBKDF2 and AES-256 encryption to protect your sensitive data. For extra security, 1Password also requires you to enter a secret key when logging in to your account. Even if someone manages to guess your master password, they won’t be able to access your account without entering the secret key. 1Password offers additional peace of mind with its zero-information policy, which means the company doesn’t share your data with anyone. Finally, 1Password makes it possible to store data in multiple vaults, making it easy to protect your most sensitive data by storing it in a separate location.
Bitwarden is compatible with a variety of operating systems and browsers, making it a convenient option for anyone who needs a password manager. Supported browsers include Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Edge and Safari. If you need a password manager for a desktop or mobile platform, Bitwarden works with Windows, Android, macOS, Linux and iOS. For added convenience, Bitwarden is also compatible with Tor, Brave and Vivaldi, making it a good option for business owners who need added flexibility for their users. The added functionality gives Bitwarden a slight edge over 1Password in the compatibility category.
1Password is also compatible with a variety of platforms, making it a good choice for personal or business use. Like Bitwarden, 1Password works with the Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge and Opera browsers. If you’re using Internet Explorer, 1Password is the best option — version 4 for Windows still works with the older browser. This password manager works with both iOS and Android for mobile users and Windows, Linux and macOS for desktop users. Unlike Bitwarden, 1Password isn’t compatible with additional browsers, which may be a concern if you need a password manager for multiple employees who work from home or use their mobile devices while traveling for business.
|Chrome, Chrome OS||Yes||Yes|
|Linux||Yes||Yes (command line)|
* Only with 1Password 4 for Windows
Bitwarden gets high marks for being easy to set up and use right away. If you’re on a mobile device, you can download the Bitwarden app from Google Play or the App Store. Laptop and desktop users should visit the Bitwarden website and choose a browser or operating system to use. Once it’s installed, Bitwarden walks you through the process of choosing a master password, nudging you to create a stronger one if your initial attempt is weak. The Bitwarden dashboard is well-organized and visually appealing, making it easy to find the information you need in just a few seconds. It’s also intuitive, which means you won’t have to spend time researching how to perform basic functions.
1Password is also easy to set up, even if you have a business or family account with multiple users. After creating an account, 1Password prompts you to create a master password. Once you complete this step, you’ll be able to start using 1Password on your mobile devices or download the browser extension to make it easier to log in to your favorite websites. What sets 1Password apart from Bitwarden is the emergency kit you receive when you sign up. The kit contains your master password, a secret key and contact information for 1Password support. If you forget your master password, the emergency kit can help you regain access to your account.
When comparing Bitwarden vs 1Password, it’s important to determine whether password sharing is an option. Although you should typically keep your passwords to yourself, you may want to share with family members who use the same banking services or music streaming services. If you have a business account, password sharing makes it easier for employees to access shared business services, such as accounting programs or mobile apps for submitting sales reports. To share passwords on Bitwarden, you have to create an organization account, invite users and use your vault to share credentials with each person.
For password sharing, 1Password has a bit of an edge over Bitwarden because it’s easier to use the shared vault to share your credentials with other users. To share a password, all you have to do is move it from your private vault to your shared vault. It’s just as easy to stop sharing a password with a user, which you may want to do if an employee quits or one of your family members no longer needs access to a shared account. To stop sharing a password, simply move it back to your private vault or delete it from 1Password completely.
Price is another feature on which Bitwarden has an advantage over 1Password. Bitwarden is an open-source security solution, which means the source code is free for everyone to use. You can even host it on your own server for extra security. For basic features, such as syncing across unlimited devices and storage of unlimited items in your vault, you’ll pay nothing. Premium features, including priority customer support and 1GB of encrypted file storage, cost $10 per year. A family account costs just $1 per month for up to five users. Bitwarden is also an affordable option for businesses, with prices ranging from free for two users to $3 per user per month for enterprise accounts.
1Password is more expensive than Bitwarden for both personal and business use. Individual access costs $2.99 per month if billed annually or $3.99 per month if you want to pay on a monthly basis. Family accounts, which accommodate up to five users, cost $4.99 per month (annually) or $6.99 per month (monthly). Team accounts cost $3.99 per user per month, business accounts cost $7.99 per user per month and enterprise accounts have custom pricing. All business accounts are billed annually, which is something to consider if you just launched and need to pay close attention to cash flow.
|Individual||Free for basic features; $10 per year for premium features||$3.99 per month if billed monthly; $2.99 per month if billed annually|
|Family||$1 per month (up to 5 users)||$6.99 per month if billed monthly; $4.99 per month if billed annually (up to 5 users)|
|Teams||Free for 2 users; $5 per month (up to 5 users, billed annually)||$3.99 per user per month (billed monthly)|
|Business||N/A||$7.99 per user per month (billed annually)|
|Enterprise||$3 per user per month (billed annually)||Contact for custom pricing|
Both password managers have advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to understand what each one offers and how to use each feature to your benefit. The comparison table below explains the key features of a password manager and provides details for each company.
|Setting up the vault||Visit vault.Bitwarden.com and create an account. Once you create a user, you’ll be able to add login credentials to your new vault.||Open the homepage, click New Vault and add a description.|
|Logging into accounts||Mobile: Open the target app. A Bitwarden pop-up will appear below the login fields. Choose the correct login to auto-fill your information. Browser: Navigate to your target website. Click the Bitwarden icon on your toolbar and click the login fields. Bitwarden automatically fills in your credentials.||Mobile: After opening an app, click the 1Password Mini icon, select a login item and drag it into the fields in the app. Browser: Open the login page of any website. Click the 1Password icon to fill the fields.|
|Creating passwords||When you create a Bitwarden account, you’ll be prompted to create a master password.||Locate the 1Password button on the browser toolbar. Click the Generate Password button to create a new password.|
|Changing passwords||To change your master password, log in to your Bitwarden vault. Under My Account, choose Change Master Password. Type in your current credentials, click the Change Master Password button and type in your new password.||Sign in to the website, click the 1Password button and enter a new password. You may be prompted to enter your current password first.|
|Sharing logins||Create an organization account if you haven’t already done so. Share passwords by inviting the user to the organization.||Open your private vault, hover over the item and click Move/Copy to move the item to the shared vault.|
|Recovering account||Account recovery isn’t possible with Bitwarden. If you forget your master password, you’ll have to delete your existing account and create a new one.||You can recover your password using a family account, if applicable. You may also be able to recover your account using Touch ID, Face ID or another device.|
|Advanced security features||Bitwarden uses 256-AES encryption, PBKDF2, hashing and salting to protect your sensitive data.||1Password uses code feature validation, auto-lock and several forms of encryption to protect your personal information.|