Usually when you sign in to an Internet service or site like Gmail, you are asked to enter your username or password to do so. And if you have configured two-factor authentication, you may also be asked to provide the second code to complete the login process and access account data.
Google recently changed how you log in to its products, and if you happen to be a multi-account owner, not for the better. Multi-account in this regard means that you have access to multiple Google accounts that you switch between regularly.
The sign in form has changed significantly, with the most important change being that Google is now displaying your username (your email address usually) in the username field by default so that you cannot change it anymore.
The new Google sign in page
One account. All of Google.
Sign in to continue to Gmail.
Sign in with a different account
If you are just using that account, that is not that big of a change as you just have to type your password to sign in to the service.
The problems start when you want to use a different account to sign in. Say, you have a work and home account, or a friend wants to sign in, or you use multiple accounts to access different Google products. Whatever the reason, you may notice that the only way to go forward with signing in with a different Google account is to click on the "sign in with a different account" link underneath the login form.
If you now thought that Google is displaying a username and password field for your to log in to the selected Google service regularly, you are wrong.
Instead, you are taken to a "Choose an account" page where you can select from accounts that you have previously signed in with, or pick a new account by clicking on the add account link on that page.
Only when you click on the "Add account" link, you are taken to a page where you are allowed to enter an alternate email address and password that you want to sign in with.
Each account that you add this way is added to the list of accounts that you can switch between. So, whenever you want to change accounts, you need to perform the very same steps to do so. Instead of clicking on "add account" on the "choose an account" page, you may select an account that you have previously added. That too requires you to go through the process, so instead of being able to sign in with a different account directly, you need to click twice before you can do so.
You have three options to change this behavior. While you cannot undo the new Google sign in page at all, you can:
- Clear all Google related cookies whenever you want to switch accounts to clear the email field so that you can type in the email and password field on the Google sign in form.
- Use a different web browser or a different browser profile to use multiple accounts without going through the process.
- Use a browser extension that enables you to use different accounts by using separate sets of cookies for these accounts.
While Google is usually about simplification and making things as easy and error-proof as possible, the new sign in page is everything but, at least if you own multiple Google accounts. Switching between those accounts has become more work than before, and there is no real reason for why the new login page has been created like this.
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