Dashlane Adds Cheaper ‘Essentials’ Password Manager Option

The new package works across two separate devices, and also features a password changer and Secure Notes. But is it worth it?
Jack Turner

Password manager Dashlane has announced a new tier to its pricing plan, with Essentials.

The new package is its cheapest tier available (outside of its free offering), and lets users manage passwords on two devices.

The Essentials plan means that Dashlane now has a more value-led proposition for users, but how does it stack up against its competitors?

Dashlane's Essentials Tier

The new tier from Dashlane sits between its free package and its Premium one. It's priced at $2.49 per month, making it ever so slightly cheaper than the $3.99 per month Premium package. So what do you get?

The real headline with Essentials is that you can install it on two devices. The free tier only allows for installation on one device, which means that if you install it on your laptop, you'll have to juggle passwords manually on your phone. Essentials sidesteps this issue by allowing you to install it on both your laptop and phone (or tablet, or two PCs, or two phones).

The Essentials plan also includes Dashlane's password changer, which can automatically generate strong passwords for the user on compatible websites. Essentials also gives you access to Secure Notes, a helpful feature which lets you store plain text securely — think a phone lock screen number or laptop password.

“With more and more people realizing the importance of proper password hygiene, one of the most common requests we heard was for a more flexible plan,” said Derek Snyder, Chief Product Officer at Dashlane. “[A plan that] still helps users manage the fundamentals of their identity, privacy, and security at an accessible monthly price point, but may not have as many advanced security features as our Premium offering.”

Read our full review of Dashlane

How Does Essentials Compare to Other Password Managers?

The timing of Dashlane's new, cheaper tier isn't an accident. It comes soon after LastPass announced that its free tier would be more restricted, and only allow users to have an account on either a phone OR a computer. Essentials, on the other hand, can be installed on two separate devices. It's no coincidence that Dashlane's new tier costs 50 cents less per month than LastPass' Premium plan — it's clearly looking to catch those that wanted a password manager on two devices, but wanted a cheaper deal.

But Dashlane and LastPass aren't the only password managers in town, so how does Essentials compare with the rest of the competition?

1Password's cheapest package, Standard, costs $2.99 per month, making it 50 cents per month more expensive than the Dashlane Essentials tier. However, 1Password's offering can be used across an unlimited number of devices.

NordPass, meanwhile, has a free tier that allows for use on one device. However, its Premium package can be installed on six devices and costs $1.49 per month.

Finally, Sticky Password has a free tier that actually includes unlimited devices. The rub here, though, is that there is no synchronization between those devices, meaning you'll have to manage them all separately, and what you do on one device won't be remembered on another. To get cross-device synchronization, you'll need the Premium package, at $2.49 per month.

Read our guide to the best password manager of 2021

Do You Need a Password Manager?

If you've never used a password manager before, you might be curious as to why you'd need one. According to research, the average person has 100 passwords to remember, and, if you're taking your security seriously, each one must be unique.  That's a lot of information for your brain to retain, and sometimes we can get sloppy, choosing the same password for multiple sites for ease of use. This means that if someone gets hold of your Amazon password, they could also have access to many other sites you use including, perhaps, your email and bank account.

A password manager relieves a lot of the stress of remembering all those passwords and makes logging into sites as simple as tapping a button. Not only that, but password managers will suggest passwords for you, ones that are more secure than the name of your first pet (sorry Fluffkins). Some also monitor the web too, alerting you when a password is compromised through a hack or leak.

For just a few dollars a month, we think that a password manager is well worth the money. Of course, there are also free options, but you'll likely out grow their restrictions pretty quickly. Many password managers include a free trial, so you can give them a go before spending a cent.

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Jack is the Deputy Editor for Tech.co. He has been writing about a broad variety of technology subjects for over a decade, both in print and online, including laptops and tablets, gaming, and tech scams. As well as years of experience reviewing the latest tech devices, Jack has also conducted investigative research into a number of tech-related issues, including privacy and fraud.

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