Feeling lazy? Google Chrome will now complete online forms for you
Tuesday 14 April 2015
Google Chrome extends autocomplete functionality
Google has announced that Chrome now supports form auto-completion in accordance with the WHATWG HTML Standard.
Although Chrome already supported basic form auto-completion, the new functionality will allow support for more advanced form auto-completion settings for web developers.
How does the new autocomplete work?
Previously the ‘autocomplete’ attribute for form elements on web pages could be set to either “on” or “off”, meaning the browser could or could not decide for itself how to auto-fill the input elements.
With the latest Chrome development, it is now possible to use a variety of options in the ‘autocomplete’ attribute in order to let the browser know what type of data is expected, which will allow the browser to auto-fill the input element with the correct piece of data based on previous similar entries.
How can I use autocomplete on my website?
Although there are a number of permutation how autocomplete can now be used, here are a few simple examples.
1. Autocomplete specifically for shipping address details:
<input name=”address2” autocomplete="shipping address-line2">
<input name=”country” autocomplete="shipping country">
<input name=”postcode” autocomplete="shipping postal-code">
2. Autocomplete specifically for billing address details:
<input name=”address2” autocomplete="billing address-line2">
<input name=”country” autocomplete="billing country">
<input name=”postcode” autocomplete="billing postal-code">
3. Autocomplete specifically for first and last names:
<input name=”lname” autocomplete="family-name">
4. Autocomplete specifically for date of birth:
5.Autocomplete specifically for home, work or mobile phone:
<input name=”work_phone” autocomplete="work tel">
<input name=”mobile_phone” autocomplete="mobile tel">
6. Autocomplete specifically for home or work email address:
<input name=”work_email” autocomplete="work email">
In summary we think this is a great development that will help web developers save users time – particularly on mobile devices – when filling in common information about themselves.
But there are caveats. Firstly, Chrome appears to be the first popular browser to implement the new autocomplete functionality, meaning we will have to wait for widespread support for the new feature.
Secondly, specific targeting of autocomplete fields will need to be implemented on a site by site basis to be accurate, so implementation time will be required for every website wanted to make use of the feature.
If this is something that could improve the user interface on your website then contact us to discuss how we could implement this on your site.