Duo vs Microsoft Authenticator (2023): In-depth Comparability

This can be a comparability of Duo and Microsoft Authenticator. Study extra about their key variations, options, safety, and efficiency on this in-depth evaluation.

Two-factor authentication, which is a type of multi-factor authentication, has emerged as an important safety measure for organizations to reinforce the safety of their customers. Duo and Microsoft Authenticator are two in style apps that present this stage of safety.

Duo makes use of push notifications, time-based, one-time passwords, bodily tokens and biometrics to confirm the identification of customers at login. Equally, Microsoft Authenticator makes use of push notifications, one-time passcodes, and biometrics for authentication and may combine with Microsoft 365 and Azure Lively Listing. Whereas each 2FA choices share some similarities, there are nonetheless key variations that may sway your resolution to decide on one over the opposite.

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Duo vs. Microsoft Authenticator: Comparability desk

Options Duo Microsoft Authenticator
Push notifications Sure Sure
Biometrics authentication Sure Sure
One-time passcodes Sure Sure
Integrations with different services Very huge Microsoft-first and restricted
Backup and restoration Sure Sure
Pricing Comes with a free trial and begins at $3 per person, monthly. Gives a free model however comes bundled with Microsoft Azure Lively Listing and 365 Enterprise accounts

Duo vs Microsoft Authenticator pricing

Under is how Duo and Microsoft Authenticator sq. up towards one another by way of pricing.

Duo pricing (Free plan; then begins at $3 per person, monthly for next-level plan)

Duo follows a tiered system based mostly on options and providers you desire to added to the appliance.

  • Free plan: The free model permits as much as 10 customers and provides basic safety features.
  • Important: This plan begins at $3 per person, monthly and helps further options together with single sign-on, verified Duo push, trusted endpoints, passwordless authentication, and person group insurance policies.
  • Benefit: The Duo Benefit plan is $6 per person, monthly and contains every thing supported within the Important plan plus different superior options like risk-based authentication, adaptive entry insurance policies, gadget well being checks, full gadget visibility and risk detection.
  • Premier: This plan begins at $9 per person, pre month and encompasses each function within the Benefit plan, together with full gadget belief with endpoint safety verify, a complete package deal for zero-trust entry, and VPN-less distant entry to non-public assets. (Determine A) 

Determine A

DUO single sign on.
DUO single signal on.

Microsoft Authenticator pricing (Free; bundled into some present merchandise)

Microsoft Authenticator pricing follows a simple mannequin of being free and bundled with all Microsoft Azure Lively Listing and 365 Enterprise accounts. For a full record of costs and options, go to this information to find out if Microsoft Authenticator is bundled along with your group’s present licenses.

Characteristic comparability: Duo vs. Microsoft Authenticator

Each Duo and Microsoft Authenticator current wonderful options to customers however here’s a head-to-head function comparability:

Software Programming Interface integration

Most enterprise organizations contemplating Duo or Microsoft Authenticator will wish to combine these apps with present software program or customized software program and server functions. Duo helps limitless software integrations via its platform on all editions obtainable. Alternatively, whereas Microsoft Authenticator additionally integrates with different third-party services, it’s far simpler to combine with Microsoft-supported providers as a result of it’s already bundled with a few of them.

Security measures

Each Duo and Microsoft Authenticator prioritize safety and provide strong options to guard person accounts. Duo helps adaptive authentication, which assesses the danger of every login try and prompts for added verification when essential. It additionally supplies granular entry insurance policies, permitting directors to outline particular authentication necessities based mostly on person roles and situations. Microsoft Authenticator leverages the facility of Azure Lively Listing to ship superior safety features comparable to conditional entry insurance policies, risk-based authentication, and seamless single sign-on experiences throughout functions. It additionally helps hardware-backed safety keys for enhanced safety towards phishing assaults.

Authentication strategies

Each Duo and Microsoft Authenticator present a number of authentication strategies. Duo provides a wide range of authentication choices, together with push notifications, one-time passcodes (OTPs), telephone calls, and {hardware} tokens. Microsoft Authenticator additionally helps push notifications, OTPs, and biometric authentication (fingerprint, facial recognition) on supported units. (Determine B)

Determine B

Microsoft Authenticator push notification. 
Microsoft Authenticator push notification.

Backup and restoration

Duo supplies choices for the backup and restoration of authentication units. Customers can enroll a number of units as backups, guaranteeing entry to their accounts even when their major gadget is misplaced or unavailable. This function provides an additional layer of comfort and ensures continuity of entry. Microsoft Authenticator additionally provides backup and restoration choices, permitting customers to securely retailer their accounts and settings within the cloud. This function permits simple restoration of accounts on new units or in case of gadget loss. (Determine C)

Determine C

Verification for DUO push.
Verification for DUO push.

Duo execs and cons

Whereas Duo presents many advantages to customers, it additionally leaves some drawbacks. Here’s a abstract of the professionals and cons.


  • Single sign-on.
  • Passwordless.
  • A number of authentication strategies.
  • Push Phishing Safety.
  • Menace Detection.
  • Backup and restoration.


  • Duo Free accounts are restricted to 10 customers.
  • Barely cluttered UI in sure locations as a result of huge number of authentication choices.
  • Safety notifications generally take longer than anticipated.

Microsoft Authenticator execs and cons

Microsoft authenticator provides highly effective two-factor authentication options, however there could also be a couple of drawbacks some customers say they’ve skilled whereas utilizing the product. Under are a few of the execs and cons.


  • Passwordless sign-in.
  • Push notifications via cellular app.
  • The authenticator app can be utilized as a software program token.
  • Backup and restoration help.


  • Multi-factor report choice is just supported within the greater plans.
  • Pricing mannequin could also be difficult for some customers to navigate.
  • Is probably not best for corporations that don’t have Microsoft ecosystems.


So as to draw a good comparability between Duo and Microsoft Authenticator, we began by going via the documentation pages of every product, the place we realized about their key options and the way they combine with different applied sciences. We additionally checked out person critiques from trusted third-party overview websites to fetch some opinions from verified customers. The author additionally makes use of Microsoft Authenticator, making it simpler to debate the product based mostly on my expertise. All these offered sufficient perception that helped in shaping our overview.

Ought to your group use Duo or Microsoft Authenticator?

Choosing one 2FA software program over one other could be difficult, particularly when many putting similarities bind the merchandise collectively. For Duo and Microsoft Authenticator, the primary level of reference when it’s important to resolve to select between the 2 ought to revolve round your total expertise stack, ease of use and pricing.

Should you closely depend on Microsoft merchandise comparable to Azure Lively Listing, Microsoft 365, and different Microsoft providers, Microsoft Authenticator might present a extra seamless and built-in expertise. Alternatively, when you’ve got a various set of platforms and functions, Duo’s broad compatibility and intensive integration capabilities make it a extra versatile selection. Duo integrates simply with providers like Slack, Atlassian, Salesforce, Dropbox and extra.

You must also take into account the pricing fashions and the way they meet your enterprise necessities and budgets. Duo’s pricing construction varies relying on the options and help stage chosen, whereas Microsoft Authenticator is often bundled with Azure Lively Listing and Microsoft 365 subscriptions. Duo’s pricing is extra complete and clear, not like Microsoft’s, which is extra difficult on account of its bundling with Azure Listing and Microsoft 365 subscriptions. So, it’s vital to guage your group’s particular wants and take into account the related prices when evaluating the pricing of those options.

Additionally, take into account the person expertise and ease of use. Consider the authentication strategies every answer provides and their compatibility along with your customers’ units. Each Duo and Microsoft Authenticator present seamless person experiences, however preferences might differ relying in your group’s tech stack, person base and the way acquainted they’re with every platform. You should use the free variations provided by every answer to find out which supplies the perfect person expertise in your firm. The free tier might make it easier to assess issues such because the simplicity of setup, the intuitiveness of the authentication course of, and any further options that improve usability.

Lastly, the choice between Duo and Microsoft Authenticator will rely in your group’s distinctive wants, infrastructure, and priorities. Contemplate conducting a pilot check with each options to guage their efficiency and compatibility inside your enterprise setting. This can help you collect firsthand expertise and suggestions out of your customers and directors earlier than making a closing resolution.

For a extra complete analysis of two-factor authentication based mostly on safety affect and strategic enterprise initiative, take a look at this two-factor authentication analysis information.

Learn subsequent: Two-factor authentication: A cheat sheet

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