We’re continuing to make progress on converging the Azure AD and Microsoft account identity systems. One of the big steps on this journey is to redesign the sign-in UI so both systems look consistent. Today I’m happy to announce that this updated design is in public preview!
Redesign of Azure AD & Microsoft account sign-in experiences
Azure AD & Microsoft account sign-in pages will both change to have a consistent look and feel, so you won’t experience anymore jarring transitions when you move between the two.
- Pagination of the Azure AD sign-in page
The new design prompts you to enter your username on the first screen followed by a credential (typically a password) on a second screen. We’ve done a lot of testing of this design and our telemetry shows that people are able to sign in with a notably higher success rate using this approach. It also sets us up to be able to easily introduce new forms of authentication like phone sign-in and certificate-based authentication.
Here are a few screen shots of this new experience:
Paginated sign-in flow (desktop view)
- Username and password are collected on separate pages
- This mock shows default branding – when no company branding is configured
Desktop UI (with company branding configured)
You might have noticed that we’ve been rolling out the new design on Microsoft accounts over the last few weeks. Now, it’s Azure AD’s turn. Starting today, you’ll see a banner on the Azure AD sign-in page giving users the option to opt-in to see the new experience. This is a great opportunity for you to do a few sanity checks:
Check to see that your existing company branding, if configured, works well with the new layout
Any company branding you currently have configured will be carried forward to the new UI: sign-in image, banner logo, username hint, sign-in page text and background color. However, the opaque white box in the middle of the new design might obscure the subject focus of your existing image. If you need to make any changes, you can make them in the “Company branding” pane in the Azure Portal.
Verify automation that runs on the sign-in page
Since sign-in is now done over two screens, any existing automation might break. Do a quick test and update your code if necessary.
Update documentation and training material
Documentation containing screenshots and step-by-step guides for signing in might have to be updated to explain the paginated flow and show the new UI.
Note that there are still a few pages like MFA that will continue to show the old design. We’re working hard to bring the new design to these pages over the next few weeks.
We know that this will be a disruptive change for some of you, but we believe that this sets us up for an exciting future of innovation in the sign-in space. To give you time to prepare for the change, we’ll leave the new experience as an opt-in public preview for the next few weeks. We plan to switch over to the new UI by default during the last week of September.
Let us know if you have any questions, and as always, we’re looking forward to your feedback and suggestions. Head on over to the Azure Active Directory Forum to share your thoughts with us.
Alex Simons (twitter: @Alex_A_Simons)
Director of Program Management
Microsoft Identity Division