Today we are releasing the beta version of a feature called Identities. Identities are an evolution of Sessions and will live along side them. While Sessions are not going anywhere, we think that most users will find Identities to be their new 'go to' for managing multiple accounts.
How to Use It
To get started just click the Identity Manager extension icon. It's this handsome-looking guy:
He'll be somewhere around here on your extension tool bar.
Just click the icon and follow the instructions to set up your first Identity.
The Difference Between Sessions and Identities
Let's take a look at what the introduction of Identities means for you. This chart summarizes the primary differences between Sessions and Identities.
|Cookie Jars||Not permanent. If you close all purple tabs, that cookie jar is destroyed and you'll get a new cookie jar the next time you open them.||Permanent. When you create an Identity, the cookie jar is saved permanently even if you close all tabs in it.|
|Tab Colors||25 colors are pre-selected for you and that limits that number of Sessions you can have per Workspace.||You select the colors for all of your tabs so you can select more meaningful colors.|
|Global Across Workspaces||Not global. A purple tab in one Workspace has a separate cookie jar from purple tabs in other Workspaces.||Global. Identity tabs share the same cookie jar no matter what Workspace they are in.|
With Sessions, cookie jars are temporary and have colors pre-selected by us. Identities on the other hand allow you to choose a custom color and are permanent.
That means if you have the Identities 'Work', 'Home', 'Facebook', 'Gmail' and only use each identity for what it was intended, you can keep cookie jars for all of those Identities completely separate!
Another way to think about Identities is if you want to be sure you never cross client accounts on Google or Social Media, you can use a different Identity for each client to keep them straight.
Identities are Global
Sessions are local - their cookie jars are isolated to the Workspace they are in. That means that if you have purple tabs in 5 different Workspaces, for example, they won't share cookies. That allows you to have 15 completely isolated Sessions in each Workspace. But it's a little harder to keep track of because of the colors.
So with Identities, we've added different possibilities. You can access your Identities from any Workspace. All tabs within an Identity will share cookies no matter what Workspace you're in, so your tabs for your client Acme will always be logged in to Acme's accounts.
How Does it Work with Proxies?
You can bind a proxy to each Identity with the Ghost Proxy Control extension. You'll always connect through the proxy you select so you can be sure that Identity presents itself consistently every day.
This is great if you need to spot check ads from various locations of if you are working on web development for a site that has multiple versions based on user country.
It will also help you manage multiple social media accounts in a more isolated way and without having to worry if you are crossing IPs.
Beta Status and Feature Requests
This feature is in Beta. As with Sessions there will eventually be limits of some sort on this feature that will be available to different plans. We don't have any details on this yet since this is the first time the feature is out in the public but given the various use cases we have for the browser it will probably be something like 'you can use x Session and Identities in any combination you want up to a certain limit for each plan'.
That's a mouthful - but essentially it means don't worry about getting less than what you have now. Our goal is to make sure you have more options to the greatest extent possible.
While it's in beta though, it's a free-for-all! Use as many as you want and please use the 'Feedback' link in the extension to let us know what you think, what you want and what you don't want. As always, we rely on user feedback to make the browser better so we're excited to hear from you.