[whatwg] API for unique identification of devices (mobile/tablet/pc)
ian at hixie.ch
Fri Dec 14 10:30:27 PST 2012
On Fri, 14 Dec 2012, Stan wrote:
> First, I don't think it's convenient for users to register themselves on
> many sites, which they visit occasionally. If most of the users do this
> right now, it does not mean they are happy with this, this is bacause
> there is no other, more simple way (as simple as just clicking on
> "remember me").
There are solutions to this problem, e.g. you can authenticate to a site
using your Facebook identity using one or two clicks.
> Second, user accounts are based on e-mails as a rule, which is not
> unique at all, every user can have multiple e-mails and multiple
> registrations. Many web-services struggle against users' reputation
> spoofing made via such fake accounts.
Users can have multiple devices and could tell their browser to provide a
unique identifier with each page access, so a device ID API wouldn't stop
or change this.
> Third, I think it's up to a certain web-service design and requirements,
> if it needs to identify user accounts or user devices. For example,
> usage of the same profile on multiple devices can be a violation of a
> web-service license agreement, or a web-service may bind several devices
> to the same profile.
Binding multiple devices to a profile is easy and done today, it doesn't
require an identifier.
An identifier wouldn't help stop a user from using multiple devices with
one site (not that such a restriction would even make sense in the first
place), because there's no guarantee that the user agent isn't providing
you with fake device identifiers.
> Multiple browser profiles on the same device do not matter, because the
> same device ID will be returned.
What if the different profiles are for different people? Or different
identities of the same person? (e.g. a woman's professional identity and
a pseudonymous identity in an assault support group; or a man's identity
that he uses for this extended family, and his identity that he uses when
exploring his transexuality?)
> The main point, if device ID could be available it would provide more
> great possibilities for users and web-services.
I don't understand what it would provide that would be better than the
existing ability to use one's identity from an identity provider.
Ian Hickson U+1047E )\._.,--....,'``. fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/ U+263A /, _.. \ _\ ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer. `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
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