LastPass is a veteran in the password management industry. It is reliable and easy to use. But LastPass̵
Compared with LastPass, Bitwarden is a novice. When LastPass was flashy, Bitwarden was understated and was a utilitarian. In other words, Bitwarden has done a lot of things from the feature-rich free plan to the reasonably priced Premium and Family plans while providing first-class security.
Bitwarden’s free plan provides cross-device support
Starting March 16, 2021, LastPass has changed the way its free plan works. LastPass Free plan users will no longer have access to cross-device synchronization support. This means that the password will only be available on a single device and will not be synchronized between the desktop and mobile clients. To use the cross-sync feature, users will need to upgrade to the $3 per month LastPass Premium plan.
On the other hand, Bitwarden provides cross-device synchronization support and unlimited password storage in the free plan. In fact, it has almost everything a user needs, including strong password generation, secure card storage, notes, etc.
Bitwarden can be used locally on all platforms
LastPass is a web-first service and will be displayed when you view its download page. You will find the extensions of all popular web browsers, but not the native desktop applications (Android, iPhone and iPad only).
From a security perspective, it is necessary to keep the username and password out of the browser (other members of the family may use it). With Bitwarden, you can access native applications for Windows 10, Mac, and Linux. The Mac application even supports Touch ID. There is also a command line client for advanced users.
Bitwarden has super fast automatic login function
LastPass is designed to be easy to use. You will see this when you browse the web client (with large images and buttons) and try to auto-fill the password using a browser extension. If available, LastPass will display the saved login name next to the password field. This is super convenient for beginners.
On the other hand, Bitwarden took a more practical approach. It is designed for enterprises and advanced users. If you want to log in to the website using the saved password, you must click on the Bitwarden extension and then select the login name from the drop-down list.
However, at the time of writing this article, Bitwarden also has an advanced feature that can automatically fill in the saved login data in the second second after you load the login page. You can enable this experimental feature via “Settings”> “Options”> “Enable auto-fill on page load”.
Once enabled, this small feature will retain the autofill feature of LastPass.
Bitwarden is open source
Both LastPass and Bitwarden follow industry standard encryption protocols, using AES-256 encryption on their servers and during data transmission (this protects you from man-in-the-middle attacks).
Neither service carries the key identifier. This means that if you lose your master password, you will not be able to access your vault. On the other hand, this also means that LastPass or Bitwarden cannot access your data (even if the service is hacked, as LastPass did in 2015).
But Bitwarden has a huge advantage here because the product itself is open source. This benefits users in two ways. First, this means that third-party security companies can audit the code and ensure that Bitwarden is not hacked or attacked. Bitwarden received a clean health list from the security company Cure53 in 2018.
Second, Bitwarden’s open source code can help third parties and the community build other tools and clients. This also means that if Bitwarden ever shuts down, community members can create applications or tools that can still use the Bitwarden database.
Bitwarden’s premium plan is very cheap
For most users, Bitwarden’s free plan is sufficient. However, if you wish to use two-factor authentication from a password manager app (rather than using a stand-alone utility like Google Authenticator), you can use Bitwarden’s $10/year plan to generate two-factor authentication codes directly from Bitwarden.
related: How to use Google Authenticator to enable two-factor authentication for your Google account
Bitwarden Premium also gives you access to 1GB of encrypted storage space. You can increase storage space by paying $4 per month for each additional gigabyte.
In sharp contrast to this is LastPass Premium, which costs $36 per year. If you are considering a family or business plan, this is the same thing. Bitwarden’s family account costs $40 a year to access six user profiles. LastPass charges a fee of $48/year for its family account.
In terms of business, Bitwarden provides a free account for two users, which can add $3/month of additional users for each new user. LastPass charges $4 per user per month and does not provide free plans for businesses.
Switching to Bitwarden is very easy
For most users who are looking for a free alternative to LastPass, Bitwarden makes the most sense. It provides the same functions at a cheap price. In addition, the migration from LastPass to Bitwarden couldn’t be easier. All you have to do is export the CSV file from LastPass and import it into Bitwarden.
Complete LastPass? Make sure to delete your LastPass account.
related: How to delete your LastPass account