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Step-by-Step Tutorial: How to Open Safari Browser on Mac, iPhone, and iPad
Are you new to the world of Apple devices and unsure how to open the Safari browser? Look no further. In this step-by-step tutorial, we will guide you through the process of opening Safari on your Mac, iPhone, and iPad. Whether you want to browse the internet, access your favorite websites, or explore new content, Safari is a powerful and user-friendly browser that can enhance your online experience. Let’s get started.
Opening Safari on Mac
Locate the Safari icon: On your Mac desktop or in the dock at the bottom of your screen, look for a blue compass-like icon with a white background. This is the Safari icon.
Click on the Safari icon: Once you have located the Safari icon, simply click on it with your mouse or trackpad.
Wait for Safari to launch: After clicking on the icon, give it a few seconds to load. You will see a new window open up with the familiar interface of Safari.
Congratulations. You have successfully opened Safari on your Mac. Now let’s move on to opening it on an iPhone.
Opening Safari on iPhone
Unlock your iPhone: Press either the home button or side button (depending on your device) and swipe up or enter your passcode to unlock your iPhone.
Find the Safari app: Look for an app with a blue compass-like icon labeled “Safari.” It is usually located on one of your home screens or in a folder labeled “Utilities.”
Tap on the Safari app: Once you have located it, simply tap once on its icon.
Wait for Safari to open: Give it a moment for Safari to load. You will be greeted with its familiar interface and ready access to all its features.
Well done. You now know how to open Safari on an iPhone as well. Let’s move on to opening it on an iPad.
Opening Safari on iPad
Wake up your iPad: Press the home button or the power button (depending on your device) to wake up your iPad.
Locate the Safari app: Look for a blue compass-like icon labeled “Safari” on one of your home screens or in a folder.
Tap on the Safari app: Once you have found it, tap once on its icon.
Wait for Safari to load: Give it a few seconds for Safari to open and load its interface. You will then be ready to start browsing the web.
Fantastic. You have successfully opened Safari on your iPad as well. Now you can enjoy all the features and benefits of this versatile browser across all your Apple devices.
In conclusion, opening the Safari browser is a simple process that can be done with just a few clicks or taps, depending on the device you are using. Whether you are using a Mac, iPhone, or iPad, following these step-by-step instructions will ensure that you can easily access and navigate through Safari’s powerful features and functionalities. So go ahead, open Safari, and embark upon an exciting online journey.
This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.
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iPad User Guide
- Setup basics
- Make your iPad your own
- Keep in touch with friends and family
- Customize your workspace
- Do more with Apple Pencil
- Customize iPad for your child
- Models compatible with iPadOS 17
- iPad mini (5th generation)
- iPad mini (6th generation)
- iPad (6th generation)
- iPad (7th generation)
- iPad (8th generation)
- iPad (9th generation)
- iPad (10th generation)
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- iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd generation)
- iPad Pro 11-inch (4th generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (4th generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation)
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (6th generation)
- What’s new in iPadOS 17
- Turn on and set up iPad
- Wake and unlock
- Set up cellular service
- Connect to the internet
- Sign in with Apple ID
- Subscribe to iCloud+
- Find settings
- Set up mail, contacts, and calendar accounts
- Learn the meaning of the status icons
- Charge the battery
- Show the battery percentage
- Check battery usage
- Use Low Power Mode to save battery life
- Read and bookmark the user guide
- Learn basic gestures
- Learn advanced gestures
- Adjust the volume
- Find your apps in App Library
- Switch between apps
- Zoom an app to fill the screen
- Quit and reopen an app
- Drag and drop
- Open two items in Split View
- Switch an app window to Slide Over
- View an app’s windows and workspaces
- Multitask with Picture in Picture
- Move, resize, and organize windows
- Access features from the Lock Screen
- Perform quick actions
- Search on iPad
- Get information about your iPad
- View or change cellular data settings
- Travel with iPad
- Change or turn off sounds
- Create a custom Lock Screen
- Change the wallpaper
- Adjust the screen brightness and color balance
- Magnify the screen
- Change the name of your iPad
- Change the date and time
- Change the language and region
- Organize your apps in folders
- Add, edit, and remove widgets
- Move apps and widgets on the Home Screen
- Remove apps
- Use and customize Control Center
- Change or lock the screen orientation
- View and respond to notifications
- Change notification settings
- Set up a focus
- Allow or silence notifications for a Focus
- Turn a Focus on or off
- Type with the onscreen keyboard
- Dictate text
- Move the onscreen keyboard
- Select and edit text
- Use predictive text
- Use text replacements
- Add or change keyboards
- Add emoji and stickers
- Take a screenshot
- Take a screen recording
- Write and draw in documents
- Add text, shapes, signatures, and more
- Zoom in or magnify in Markup
- Fill out forms and add signatures to documents
- Use Live Text to interact with content in a photo or video
- Use Visual Look Up to identify objects in your photos and videos
- Lift a subject from the photo background
- Subscribe to Apple Arcade
- Play with friends in Game Center
- Connect a game controller
- Use App Clips
- Manage purchases, subscriptions, settings, and restrictions
- Install and manage fonts
- Buy books and audiobooks
- Annotate books
- Access books on other Apple devices
- Listen to audiobooks
- Set reading goals
- Organize books
- Create and edit events in Calendar
- Send invitations
- Reply to invitations
- Change how you view events
- Search for events
- Change calendar and event settings
- Schedule or display events in a different time zone
- Keep track of events
- Use multiple calendars
- Use the Holidays calendar
- Share iCloud calendars
- Take photos
- Take a selfie
- Take a Portrait mode selfie
- Take videos
- Change advanced camera settings
- Adjust HDR camera settings
- View, share, and print photos
- Use Live Text
- Scan a QR code
- See the world clock
- Set an alarm
- Use the stopwatch
- Use multiple timers
- Add and use contact information
- Edit contacts
- Add your contact info
- Send Contacts on iPad
- Use other contact accounts
- Hide duplicate contacts
- Get started with FaceTime
- Make FaceTime calls
- Receive FaceTime calls on iPad
- Create a FaceTime link
- Take a Live Photo
- Turn on Live Captions
- Use other apps during a call
- Make a Group FaceTime call
- View participants in a grid
- Use SharePlay to watch, listen, and play together
- Share your screen in a FaceTime call
- Collaborate on a document in a FaceTime call
- Use video conferencing features
- Hand off a FaceTime call to another Apple device
- Change the FaceTime video settings
- Change the audio settings
- Change your appearance
- Leave a call or switch to Messages
- Block unwanted callers
- Report a call as spam
- Connect external devices or servers
- Modify files, folders, and downloads
- Search for files and folders
- Organize files and folders
- Set up iCloud Drive
- Share files and folders in iCloud Drive
- Share your location
- Add or remove a friend
- Locate a friend
- Get notified when friends change their location
- Notify a friend when your location changes
- Add your iPad
- Get notified if you leave a device behind
- Locate a device
- Mark a device as lost
- Erase a device
- Remove a device
- Add an AirTag
- Share an AirTag or other item in Find My on iPad
- Add a third-party item
- Get notified if you leave an item behind
- Locate an item
- Mark an item as lost
- Remove an item
- Adjust map settings
- Get started with Freeform
- Create a Freeform board
- Draw or handwrite
- Apply consistent styles
- Position items on a board
- Search Freeform boards
- Share and collaborate
- Delete and recover boards
- Get started with Health
- Fill out your Health Details
- Intro to Health data
- View your health data
- Share your health data
- View health data shared by others
- Download health records
- View health records
- Log menstrual cycle information
- View menstrual cycle predictions and history
- Track your medications
- Learn more about your medications
- Log your state of mind
- Take a mental health assessment
- Customize your Sleep Focus
- Turn Sleep Focus on or off
- View your sleep history
- Check your headphone levels
- Use audiogram data
- Back up your Health data
- Intro to Home
- Upgrade to the new Home architecture
- Set up accessories
- Control accessories
- Control your home using Siri
- Use Grid Forecast to plan your energy usage
- Set up HomePod
- Control your home remotely
- Create and use scenes
- Use automations
- Set up security cameras
- Use Face Recognition
- Configure a router
- Invite others to control accessories
- Add more homes
- Get music, movies, and TV shows
- Get ringtones
- Manage purchases and settings
- Magnify nearby objects
- Change settings
- Detect people around you
- Detect doors around you
- Receive image descriptions of your surroundings
- Read aloud text and labels around you
- Set up shortcuts for Detection Mode
- Add and remove email accounts
- Set up a custom email domain
- Check your email
- Unsend email with Undo send
- Reply to and forward emails
- Save an email draft
- Add email attachments
- Download email attachments
- Annotate email attachments
- Set email notifications
- Search for email
- Organize your email in mailboxes
- Flag or block emails
- Filter emails
- Use Hide My Email
- Use Mail Privacy Protection
- Change email settings
- Delete and recover emails
- Add a Mail widget to your Home Screen
- Print emails
- Use keyboard shortcuts
- Get travel directions
- Select other route options
- Find stops along your route
- View a route overview or a list of turns
- Change settings for spoken directions
- Get driving directions
- Report traffic incidents
- Get cycling directions
- Get walking directions
- Get transit directions
- Delete recent directions
- Get traffic and weather info
- Share your ETA
- Download offline maps
- Search for places
- Find nearby attractions, restaurants, and services
- Get information about places
- Mark places
- Share places
- Rate places
- Save favorite places
- Explore new places with Guides
- Organize places in My Guides
- Delete significant locations
- Look around places
- Take Flyover tours
- Find your Maps settings
- Measure dimensions
- View and save measurements
- Measure a person’s height
- Set up Messages
- About iMessage
- Send and reply to messages
- Unsend and edit messages
- Keep track of messages
- Forward and share messages
- Group conversations
- Watch, listen, or play together using SharePlay
- Collaborate on projects
- Use iMessage apps
- Take and edit photos or videos
- Share photos, links, and more
- Send stickers
- Request, send, and receive payments
- Send and receive audio messages
- Animate messages
- Change notifications
- Block, filter, and report messages
- Delete messages and attachments
- Recover deleted messages
- View albums, playlists, and more
- Show song credits and lyrics
- Queue up your music
- Listen to broadcast radio
- Subscribe to Apple Music
- Listen to lossless music
- Listen to Dolby Atmos music
- Apple Music Sing
- Find new music
- Add music and listen offline
- Get personalized recommendations
- Listen to radio
- Search for music
- Create playlists
- See what your friends are listening to
- Use Siri to play music
- Listen to music with Apple Music Voice
- Change the way music sounds
- Get started with News
- Use News widgets
- See news stories chosen just for you
- Read stories
- Follow your favorite teams with My Sports
- Subscribe to Apple News+
- Browse and read Apple News+ stories and issues
- Download Apple News+ issues
- Solve crossword puzzles
- Search for news stories
- Save stories in News for later
- Subscribe to individual news channels
- Get started with Notes
- Add or remove accounts
- Create and format notes
- Draw or write
- Add photos, videos, and more
- Scan text and documents
- Work with PDFs
- Create Quick Notes
- Search notes
- Organize in folders
- Organize with tags
- Use Smart Folders
- Export or print notes
- Change Notes settings
- Delete, share, or copy a photo
- View and edit Photo Booth photos in the Photos app
- View photos and videos
- Play videos and slideshows
- Delete or hide photos and videos
- Edit photos and videos
- Trim video length and adjust slow motion
- Edit Live Photos
- Edit Cinematic videos
- Edit portraits
- Use photo albums
- Edit, share, and organize albums
- Filter and sort photos and videos in albums
- Make stickers from your photos
- Duplicate and copy photos and videos
- Merge duplicate photos
- Search for photos
- Identify people and pets in Photos
- Browse photos by location
- Share photos and videos
- Share long videos
- View photos and videos shared with you
- Watch memories
- Personalize your memories
- Manage memories and featured photos
- Use iCloud Photos
- Create shared albums
- Add and remove people in a shared album
- Add and delete photos and videos in a shared album
- Set up or join an iCloud Shared Photo Library
- Add content to an iCloud Shared Photo Library
- Use iCloud Shared Photo Library
- Import and export photos and videos
- Print photos
- Find podcasts
- Listen to podcasts
- Follow your favorite podcasts
- Use the Podcasts widget
- Organize your podcast library
- Download, save, and share podcasts
- Subscribe to podcasts
- Listen to subscriber-only content
- Change download settings
- Make a grocery list
- Add items to a list
- Edit and manage a list
- Search and organize lists
- Work with templates
- Use Smart Lists
- Print reminders
- Use the Reminders widget
- Change Reminders settings
- Browse the web
- Search for websites
- Customize your Safari settings
- Change the layout
- Use Safari profiles
- Open and close tabs
- Organize your tabs with Tab Groups
- View your tabs from another device
- Share Tab Groups
- Use Siri to listen to a webpage
- Bookmark favorite webpages
- Save pages to a Reading List
- Find links shared with you
- Annotate and save a webpage as a PDF
- Automatically fill in forms
- Get extensions
- Hide ads and distractions
- Clear your cache
- Browse the web privately
- Use passkeys in Safari
- Check stocks
- Manage multiple watchlists
- Read business news
- Add earnings reports to your calendar
- Use a Stocks widget
- Translate text, voice, and conversations
- Translate text in apps
- Translate with the camera view
- Connect apps and add your TV provider
- Subscribe to Apple TV+, MLS Season Pass, and Apple TV channels
- Get shows, movies, and more
- Watch sports
- Watch Major League Soccer with MLS Season Pass
- Control playback
- Manage your library
- Change the settings
- Make a recording
- Play it back
- Edit or delete a recording
- Keep recordings up to date
- Organize recordings
- Search for or rename a recording
- Share a recording
- Duplicate a recording
- Check the weather
- Check the weather in other locations
- View weather maps
- Manage weather notifications
- Use Weather widgets
- Learn the weather icons
- Find out what Siri can do
- Tell Siri about yourself
- Have Siri announce calls and notifications
- Add Siri Shortcuts
- About Siri Suggestions
- Change Siri settings
- Set up Family Sharing
- Add Family Sharing members
- Remove Family Sharing members
- Share subscriptions
- Share purchases
- Share locations with family and locate lost devices
- Set up Apple Cash Family and Apple Card Family
- Set up parental controls
- Set up a child’s device
- Get started with Screen Time
- Protect your vision health with Screen Distance
- Set up Screen Time for yourself
- Set communication and safety limits and block inappropriate content
- Set up Screen Time for a family member
- Set up Apple Pay
- Use Apple Pay in apps and on the web
- Track your orders
- Use Apple Cash
- Use Apple Card
- Use Savings
- Manage payment cards and activity
- Power adapter and charge cable
- Use AirPods
- Use EarPods
- Use headphone audio-level features
- Apple Pencil compatibility
- Pair and charge Apple Pencil (1st generation)
- Pair and charge Apple Pencil (2nd generation)
- Pair and charge Apple Pencil (USB-C)
- Enter text with Scribble
- Draw with Apple Pencil
- Take and mark up a screenshot with Apple Pencil
- Quickly write notes
- Preview tools and controls with Apple Pencil hover
- Wirelessly stream videos and photos to Apple TV or a smart TV
- Connect to a display with a cable
- HomePod and other wireless speakers
- iPad keyboards
- Switch between keyboards
- Enter characters with diacritical marks
- Use shortcuts
- Choose an alternative keyboard layout
- Change typing assistance options
- Connect Magic Trackpad
- Trackpad gestures
- Change trackpad settings
- Connect a mouse
- Mouse actions and gestures
- Change mouse settings
- External storage devices
- Bluetooth accessories
- Apple Watch with Fitness+
- Share your internet connection
- Make and receive phone calls
- Use iPad as a second display for Mac
- Use iPad as a webcam
- Use a keyboard and mouse or trackpad across your Mac and iPad
- Hand off tasks between devices
- Cut, copy, and paste between iPad and other devices
- Stream video or mirror the screen of your iPad
- Use AirDrop to send items
- Connect iPad and your computer with a cable
- Transfer files between devices
- Transfer files with email, messages, or AirDrop
- Transfer files or sync content with the Finder or iTunes
- Automatically keep files up to date with iCloud
- Use an external storage device, a file server, or a cloud storage service
- Get started with accessibility features
- Turn on accessibility features for setup
- Change Siri accessibility settings
- Open features with Accessibility Shortcut
- Enlarge text by hovering
- Change color and brightness
- Make text more legible
- Reduce onscreen motion
- Customize per-app visual settings
- Hear what’s on the screen or typed
- Hear audio descriptions
- Turn on and practice VoiceOver
- Change your VoiceOver settings
- Use VoiceOver gestures
- Operate iPad when VoiceOver is on
- Control VoiceOver using the rotor
- Use the onscreen keyboard
- Write with your finger
- Use VoiceOver with an Apple external keyboard
- Use a braille display
- Type braille on the screen
- Customize gestures and keyboard shortcuts
- Use VoiceOver with a pointer device
- Use VoiceOver for images and videos
- Use VoiceOver in apps
- Use AssistiveTouch
- Use an eye-tracking device
- Adjust how iPad responds to your touch
- Auto-answer calls
- Change Face ID and attention settings
- Use Voice Control
- Adjust the top or Home button
- Use Apple TV Remote buttons
- Adjust pointer settings
- Adjust keyboard settings
- Adjust AirPods settings
- Adjust Apple Pencil settings
- Control a nearby Apple device
- Intro to Switch Control
- Set up and turn on Switch Control
- Select items, perform actions, and more
- Control several devices with one switch
- Use hearing devices
- Use Live Listen
- Use sound recognition
- Set up and use RTT
- Flash the LED for alerts
- Adjust audio settings
- Play background sounds
- Display subtitles and captions
- Show transcriptions for Intercom messages
- Get Live Captions (beta)
- Type to speak
- Record your Personal Voice
- Use Guided Access
- Use built-in privacy and security protections
- Set a passcode
- Set up Face ID
- Set up Touch ID
- Control access to information on the Lock Screen
- Keep your Apple ID secure
- Use passkeys to sign in to apps and websites
- Sign in with Apple
- Share passwords
- Automatically fill in strong passwords
- Change weak or compromised passwords
- View your passwords and related information
- Share passkeys and passwords securely with AirDrop
- Make your passkeys and passwords available on all your devices
- Automatically fill in verification codes
- Sign in with fewer CAPTCHA challenges on iPad
- Two-factor authentication
- Use security keys
- Control app tracking permissions
- Control the location information you share
- Control access to information in apps
- Control how Apple delivers advertising to you
- Control access to hardware features
- Create and manage Hide My Email addresses
- Protect your web browsing with iCloud Private Relay
- Use a private network address
- Use Advanced Data Protection
- Use Lockdown Mode
- Receive warnings about sensitive content
- Turn iPad on or off
- Force restart iPad
- Update iPadOS
- Back up iPad
- Return iPad settings to their defaults
- Restore all content from a backup
- Restore purchased and deleted items
- Sell, give away, or trade in your iPad
- Install or remove configuration profiles
- Important safety information
- Important handling information
- Find more resources for software and service
- FCC compliance statement
- ISED Canada compliance statement
- Apple and the environment
- Class 1 Laser information
- Disposal and recycling information
- Unauthorized modification of iPadOS
- ENERGY STAR compliance statement
Browse privately in Safari on iPad
Visit sites privately
You can use Private Browsing to open tabs that don’t appear in History on iPad or in the list of tabs on your other devices. Tabs in Private Browsing aren’t shared with your other Apple devices, even if you’re signed in with the same Apple ID .
If you have a passcode set on your iPad, Private Browsing locks when it’s not in use. Private Browsing may not lock immediately.
Follow the directions onscreen to unlock Private Browsing.
Note: Any Safari extensions you have installed that have access to browsing data are automatically turned off in Private Browsing. To turn on an extension in Private Browsing, see Use extensions .
Choose a search engine for Private Browsing
View the privacy report.
Safari helps prevent trackers from following you across websites and from seeing your IP address. You can review the Privacy Report to see a summary of trackers that have been encountered and prevented by Intelligent Tracking Prevention on the current webpage you’re visiting. You can also review and adjust Safari settings to keep your browsing activities private from others who use the same device, and help protect yourself from malicious websites.
Use iCloud Private Relay to browse the web with more privacy
When you subscribe to iCloud+ on iPad , you can use iCloud Private Relay to help prevent websites and network providers from creating a detailed profile about you. When iCloud Private Relay is turned on, the traffic leaving your iPad is encrypted and sent through two separate internet relays. This prevents websites from seeing your IP address and exact location while it prevents network providers from collecting your browsing activity in Safari. See Protect your web browsing with iCloud Private Relay on iPad .
See Protect your web browsing with iCloud Private Relay on iPad to learn how to:
Turn iCloud Private Relay completely on or off for your iPad.
Turn iCloud Private Relay on or off for a specific Wi-Fi or cellular network.
Turn iCloud Private Relay off temporarily.
Set the specificity of your IP address location.
Temporarily allow a website to see your IP address
If a website relies on IP filtering, monitoring, or rate-limiting, it might require your IP address to be visible. You can turn off iCloud Private Relay temporarily for that website only.
Note: iCloud Private Relay isn’t available in all countries or regions. See the iOS and iPadOS Feature Availability website .
Tap Show IP Address (if available).
Your IP address remains visible to that website until you leave the website or close its Safari tab. iCloud Private Relay remains on for other websites.
To turn off or pause iCloud Private Relay for all websites, see Protect your web browsing with iCloud Private Relay on iPad .
Control privacy and security settings for Safari
Prevent Cross-Site Tracking: Safari limits third-party cookies and data by default. Turn this option off to allow cross-site tracking.
Hide IP address: Safari automatically protects your IP address from known trackers. For eligible iCloud+ subscribers, your IP address is protected from trackers and websites as you browse in Safari. If this option is off, your IP address isn’t hidden.
Fraudulent Website Warning: Safari displays a warning if you’re visiting a suspected phishing website. Turn this option off if you don’t want to be warned about fraudulent websites.
Camera: Choose whether Safari websites can use your camera without asking you first. Tap Camera, then choose Ask, Deny, or Allow.
Microphone: Choose whether Safari websites can use your microphone without asking you first. Tap Microphone, then choose Ask, Deny, or Allow.
Location: Choose whether Safari websites can use your location without asking you first. Tap Location, then choose Ask, Deny, or Allow.
How to Go Incognito in Safari on iPhone, iPad & Mac
How to Go Incognito in Safari on iPhone
3. Tap Done or the “+” button to open a new private tab in Safari.
How to Exit Incognito Mode in Safari on iPhone
2. Tap [numbers] Tab to exit private browsing mode in Safari on iPhone.
How to Go Incognito in Safari on iPad
3. You will know that you’re browsing privately in Safari as the address bar will turn dark or black, and the buttons also turn black (instead of blue).
How to Exit Incognito Mode in Safari on iPad
How to Go Incognito in Safari on Mac
1. Open Safari and click on File in the menu bar at the top.
How to Make Incognito the Default Mode in Safari
If you are a privacy-concious user, you can choose to always start Safari in incognito mode for private browsing. When you do this, Safari is going to open a private window by default on your Mac. Here’s what you need to do:
How to Exit Private Browsing in Safari on Mac
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How to Go Incognito on Mac, iPhone or iPad
Incognito mode — known as Private Browsing in Safari — lets you browse the internet without your computer storing any traces of where you’ve been. Safari won’t log your history or store any cookies from a private browsing session. Learn how to activate Private Browsing in Safari on macOS and iOS, then find out how to enjoy true online privacy with a dedicated secure browser.
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While Safari’s Private Browsing (incognito) mode won’t keep you completely anonymous — for example, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and employers can still see what you’re up to — it will keep your activity private if you share your device with other people.
Usernames, passwords, and other data crumbs aren’t saved on your device when you browse in Private Mode. Read on to learn how to go incognito in Safari on Mac, iPhone, and iPad.
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How to access incognito mode in Safari on Mac
To open a private browsing window in Safari — that is, to go incognito on Mac — use the keyboard shortcut Command + Shift + N ( Ctrl + Shift + N on Windows). Or, open Safari, select File in the task bar, and click New Private Window . Find more detailed steps below.
How to go incognito on Mac
Here’s how to enable “incognito mode” on Safari if you’re using a Mac.
With Safari open on your Mac, select File from the top menu bar, and then choose New Private Window . You can also input the keyboard shortcut Shift + Command + N .
Safari will open a new Private Browsing window. You’ll know that you’re browsing privately based on the black background and Safari's confirmation.
Any tabs that you open within this Private Browsing window will function as individual private sessions — Safari won’t share any browsing data between private tabs.
How to always browse privately in Safari for Mac
You can also set Safari to open Private Browsing windows by default. Here’s how:
In the top menu bar, choose Safari , then select Preferences . You can also input the keyboard shortcut Command +, .
In the General tab, click the Safari opens with menu and choose A new private window . This setting means that Safari will open with a Private Browsing window whenever you start Safari.
If you don’t see this option available, here’s what to do:
Click the Apple icon in the top-left corner of your screen and open your System Preferences .
Click General .
Confirm that Close windows when quitting an app is checked.
You should now be able to set Safari to open with a Private Browsing window as described above.
How to open a link in a private window
Sometimes you may want to open a link directly in a private window. To do so, right-click on the link and select Open Link in a New Private Window .
How to turn off incognito mode on Mac
When you’re done browsing privately, simply close the window to exit Private Browsing. Click the little red circle in the top-left corner to disable Private Browsing and go back to normal browsing.
If, for whatever reason, you want to keep your Private Browsing window open but browse normally on a new tab, simply switch to a normal browsing window. If you don’t have one currently open, click File , then select New Window . You can also input the keyboard shortcut Command + N .
Why can't I open a private tab on Safari?
When you use private mode, Safari creates a completely new browser session with different settings that prevent any browsing data from being stored. That’s why you need to open a completely new Private Browsing window. It’s not possible to mix private and normal tabs within the same browsing window , since they operate with different settings.
But, you can always run multiple private tabs within the same private window. Simply press Command + T to open a new private tab while you’re in a private window, just like you would in normal browsing mode.
How to access incognito mode on Safari on an iPhone
Opening up Private Browsing or “incognito mode” on an iPhone is just as easy as it is on a Mac, and you’ll enjoy all the same benefits. Safari won’t store any local session data on your iPhone, nor will it sync anything from your private session to iCloud.
Here’s how to activate Safari’s Private Browsing on iPhone.
How to turn on Private Browsing on iPhone
Open Safari on your iPhone and tap the new page icon in the lower-right corner.
Tap Private in the lower-left corner.
Tap the + symbol or tap Done to begin browsing in private mode.
You’ll know that you’re in Private Browsing mode because Safari will look darker than it usually does.
How to remove Private Browsing on iPhone
To turn off Private Browsing, just repeat the same steps as described in the section directly above on turning on Private Browsing. Except that now, when you open a new page and tap Private , you’ll deactivate Private Browsing. Then tap Done to browse the internet normally.
How to access incognito mode on Safari on an iPad
To activate Private Browsing in Safari for iPad, follow the same steps we went through for Private Browsing on iPhone . The iPad and iPhone both use the iOS operating system, so the steps for using Private Browsing are the same on both devices.
What is Safari’s Private Browsing mode?
Safari was the first major browser to introduce a private browsing mode , adding it all the way back in 2005. Private Browsing in Safari works by creating a temporary browsing session — a session is a single use of your browser, from the time you open it to the time you shut it down.
Safari’s Private Browsing mode creates a completely new session for each private tab — or “new private window” — you open. These temporary private sessions are completely isolated from one another as well as from your primary browsing window. That means:
You won’t be signed in to any of your accounts.
Safari won’t store your browsing or Smart Search history, nor will it log the contents of any forms you’ve filled out.
Session data is wiped — and cookies are cleared — when you close your Private Browsing window.
Private browsing modes conceal your internet activity on a local device level , so there won’t be any record of what you’ve done on your computer. Anyone else using the same device won’t be able to see where you went or what you did while you were there. Safari’s “incognito” mode also means that your activity from your private browsing session won’t be logged to your iCloud account and synced to other devices you use.
For these reasons, private browsing is a convenient way to quickly log in and use a shared computer. You can also use private browsing to log in to the same website with multiple accounts at once — one account in your primary browsing window, and other accounts while browsing privately.
How private is Private Browsing on an iPhone or Mac?
While browsing privately on an iPhone or Mac, your IP address is still visible to any website or service you use, and your internet service provider can still see which websites you’re visiting. The same goes for browsing privately while at school or at work — a private browsing session will still leave your internet activity exposed to your school or employer.
While Private Browsing mode preserves your privacy on your device , it won’t conceal your behavior or protect you against identity theft , help you hide your IP address , or prevent advertisers (or other third-parties) from tracking your activity online. And, crucially, it won’t stop websites from using browser fingerprinting techniques to identify you with a remarkable degree of accuracy. For true privacy online, you’ll want to consider two other options: a secure browser and a VPN.
Secure browsers are web browsers built with specific features to protect your privacy and enhance your security online. Avast Secure Browser features a built-in password manager that lets you securely create and store unique passwords for all your accounts, while the Hack Check feature will alert you if any of your passwords have been exposed or compromised.
Plus, Avast Secure Browser protects you against web tracking by blocking ads, cookies, and other types of online trackers — and it even stymies advanced browser fingerprinting techniques.
VPNs , or virtual private networks , encrypt your internet connection and hide your IP address from websites and services you use. Since a VPN encrypts your traffic all the way from your device itself, your internet activity will remain hidden from anyone on your network as well as from your ISP. Avast Secure Browser for iOS and Android conveniently includes a free, built-in VPN.
Do other browsers have an incognito mode?
Though the name might vary from browser to browser, most modern browsers permit private browsing. Like in Safari, private browsing in Firefox is simply called Private Browsing . If you want to browse privately in Google Chrome , you’ll be going Incognito , and Microsoft Edge’s private mode is known as InPrivate . With Avast Secure Browser, you’ll be using Stealth Mode to browse privately.
All of these private browsing modes function the same way: they all let you browse the internet without your browser storing any of the data (history, login credentials, cookies, and so on) from your session.
Private searching vs private browsing: is there a difference?
There’s absolutely a difference between private searching and private browsing . Private browsing affects the data your browser stores on your computer, but it doesn’t have any effect on what other websites do. A private search refers to using a search engine that doesn’t track you online or log any information about your activity.
Compare Google — which tracks your searches unless you change your Google account settings — to DuckDuckGo, a popular alternative search engine that doesn’t track your queries.
Private, secure browsing for Mac, iPhone, and iPad
Avast Secure Browser is a free web browser committed to giving you true privacy and security online. By blocking ads , tracking cookies, and browser fingerprinting, your online activity can’t be monitored and your browsing data can’t be used for targeted advertising.
Powerful anti-phishing technology protects you against malicious websites and downloads that could otherwise steal your personal information or install malware on your device. And with a built-in password manager, webcam protection, an automatically encrypted connection to any website, and even a free mobile VPN , Avast Secure Browser ensures that your personal data remains safe from prying eyes.
Surf the web worry-free with a browser specifically designed by security experts with your privacy and security in mind.
Get Automatic Incognito Browsing
Download free Avast Secure Browser for Windows to enjoy private, secure, and lightning-fast web browsing.
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Install free Avast Secure Browser for Android to enjoy private, secure, and lightning-fast web browsing.
Install free Avast Secure Browser for iOS to enjoy private, secure, and lightning-fast web browsing.
Get it for Android , PC , Mac
Download free Avast Secure Browser for Mac to enjoy private, secure, and lightning-fast web browsing.
Get it for Android , PC , iOS
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How to Go Incognito on iPhone, iPad, and Mac
In this article you will find the following:
How to Go Incognito on Mac
How to exit private browsing mode on mac, how to go incognito on chrome on mac .
- How to Go Incognito in Safari on an iPhone
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How to make incognito default mode on your phone (ios).
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How to use Private Browsing in Safari, and how private is it?
Sep 15, 2023 6 min read
As consumers take stronger stands on privacy and what data they want to share, web browsers that offer incognito features become more valuable. From cookies that can track your online activity to avoiding malicious sites, the rationale behind private browsing modes is robust. Safari’s private browsing mode is Apple’s response to the issue. But how private is it? How does it work? And how do you activate it? Let’s dive into the answers to these questions.
Is Private Browsing in Safari really private?
The short answer is no. While Private Browsing in Safari has many useful features and adds a strong layer of security and privacy to your online activity, it is not 100% private. As such, knowing what actually changes when you enter Private Browsing mode is essential.
When in Private Browsing, Safari can:
- Make your searches private by concealing your web history
- Prevent cross-site tracking by limiting third-party cookies and data by default
- Hide your IP address from known trackers
- Block cookies
- Flag and warn you about fraudulent websites
- Safeguard your personal data from websites that want to extract it to serve you customized ads
- Avoid breaches and fraud by turning off autofill features for usernames, passwords, payment cards, Apple Pay, and other information
What Private Browsing doesn’t do
While the features listed above are useful, there are several things that Private Browsing cannot do. These gaps can be used by others to know if you are using the feature.
Here’s who can still see your activity, even when Private Browsing is on:
- Websites : Websites can still track some of your information, for example, your general location, and what operating system and browser you are using.
- Hackers : Private Browsing is not an antimalware solution. Cybercriminals and hackers may be able to breach Safari’s security and privacy features using malware or phishing techniques.
- Apps : Parenting and spyware apps can also bypass Apple’s privacy solution. However, using these apps without the user’s consent is illegal.
- Network : Internet service providers, including public Wi-Fi providers and network administrators, will still see your activity. This includes connections offered by your employer, school, or university.
- Terminal Archive : Those who have enough technical knowledge may still be able to access your private browsing history using Mac Console and Terminal.
How to increase your privacy when using Private Browsing on Mac
Apple does an excellent job of hiding your online activity and keeping your data safe when Private Browsing is turned on. However, Safari does store some cache information about your activity, which can be found in the Terminal archive.
To eliminate all traces in the Terminal archive:
- Go to Applications, select Utilities, and launch Console.
- Click your Mac in the sidebar.
- In the search box, type: any:mdnsresponder and click the Play button.
- Open Finder and search for Terminal in the search bar.
- Run the Terminal application.
- Type the following text into Terminal and hit Enter: sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder .
- Enter your Admin password if necessary.
By following these steps, you are deleting what is known as the DNS cache. Keep in mind that you must copy the text exactly as shown above. Don’t do anything else that may affect the Terminal archive and application.
Use trusted antimalware and privacy software
Another efficient way to guarantee your privacy is by using CleanMyMac X . Its Privacy module will delete any unwanted digital footprints, no matter where they’re stored. It will quickly delete cookies, browsing history, and the stored list of public Wi-Fi networks on your Mac.
To use the Privacy module of CleanMyMac X:
- Download CleanMyMac X .
- Go to the Privacy module.
- Choose the browsers you use and select Browsing History.
- Click Remove.
That way, CleanMyMac X can delete your online and offline history, including all traces of browsing and downloads.
How to use Private Browsing in Safari for iPhone
To use Private Browsing on your iPhone, all you have to do is activate it. This can be done in several ways. Remember that when using Private Browsing, websites you visit won’t be shared with other devices, and the list of pages you visited will not show up in your Safari history. Additionally, Private Browsing will deactivate all autofill functions. You will have to manually type in your passwords, usernames, and payment information. Let’s dive into how to switch the feature on for your iPhone.
Switch on Private mode in Safari using a shortcut
One option is to use a shortcut to quickly switch to Private mode. This can be done on iPhone, and there is also a shortcut to enable Private Browsing mode for Safari on iPad.
To switch to Private Browsing using a shortcut in your iPhone:
- Open Safari and tap and hold the Tabs button in the bottom right.
- Click Private (the icon shows a hand signaling stop).
- To open a new private tab, choose the New Private Tab option.
- Close the Private Browsing window to turn off Private Browsing on your iPhone.
If you are using an iPad:
- Tap and hold the Plus icon in the top-right corner.
- Select New Private Tab from the drop-down menu.
- To turn off Safari Private Browsing, close the Private window and open a new normal one.
How to turn Private Browsing on or off in Safari for iPhone
The other way to turn on Private Browsing on your iPhone is to:
- Open Safari on your iPhone.
- Tap the Tabs button in the bottom right.
- Select the icon in the bottom center that reads [number] Tabs or Start Page.
- Tap Private (the icon shows a hand signaling stop), then Done.
To stop using Private Browsing:
- Tap Private to return to normal browsing, then Done.
If you want to check if Private Browsing mode is currently on, open Safari and go to any site. If the Safari address bar is of a black or dark color instead of white or gray, then the feature is on.
How to use Private Browsing on Mac
Activating Safari’s Private Browsing mode on your Mac is just as straightforward, and the benefits are the same as when used on iPhone or iPad. Plus, you have the option to set it as your default method of online browsing.
How to turn on and turn off Private Browsing in Safari for Mac
To turn Private Browsing on for Safari on Mac:
- Open the Safari app.
- Click the File menu and select New Private Window.
To turn Private Browsing off on your Mac:
- If you are using a Private window in your Safari app, simply close it.
- Go to File and select New Window to open a non-private window.
How to open a Private tab in Safari by default
If you want to browse privately at all times, you can also enable Private Browsing by default:
- In Safari, navigate to Preferences > General.
- Click on the pop-up menu titled “Safari opens with.”
- Click on “A new private window.”
While Safari’s Private browsing mode isn’t the ultimate solution for your online privacy and security, it is a robust technology that will help you protect your data. If you’re looking for the first layer of privacy protection, make no mistake, Safari Private Browsing can get the job done. And if you’re also interested in keeping your shopping habits private, check out this guide to hiding orders on Amazon we published earlier.
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How to Turn Private Browsing Mode On and Off on Your iPad
- In private browsing mode, Safari will not save any information about your browsing session, such as your history, cookies, or autofill data.
- To enable or disable private browsing mode on iPad, you need to use Safari browser and tap on the Private button in the Tabs menu.
- Private browsing mode on your iPad is limited in what it can hide, but using the Ghostery tracker & ad blocker extension for Safari blocks trackers and enhances your privacy.
If you want to browse the web without leaving a trace of your activity, you might want to use private browsing mode on your iPad.
This feature allows you to surf the web without saving your history, cookies, or autofill data. It also prevents websites from tracking your online behavior and personalizing ads based on your preferences.
Private browsing mode on iPad is especially useful when you want to keep your browsing habits private from other people who might use your iPad, such as family members or friends.
This feature can also help you avoid unwanted ads and pop-ups that might slow down your browsing experience or expose you to malware.
We will show you how to both enable private browsing mode on iPad and turn off private browsing mode using Safari , the default browser for iOS devices. We will also introduce you to Ghostery, a powerful ad blocker extension for Safari that can enhance your privacy while browsing the web.
How to Turn Private Browsing Mode On
If you want to browse the web in private browsing mode on your iPad, you need to use Safari browser and follow these steps:
- Launch Safari browser on your iPad.
- Locate and tap on the Tabs icon in Safari’s toolbar. It looks like two overlapping squares.
- Tap and hold the Tabs button.
- Tap New Private Tab .
You will see a dark background and a message saying “Private Browsing Enabled”. This means that private browsing mode is active and Safari will not save any information about your browsing session.
The Safari address bar will also appear dark instead of light.
You can now browse the web privately without worrying about leaving any traces behind. You can also switch between private and regular tabs or windows by tapping on the Private button again.
How to Turn Private Browsing Mode Off
To turn off private browsing mode on your iPad:
- Tap Private so show the Tabs Groups list.
- Tap [number] Tabs at the top of the Tabs Groups list.
You can also close the private browsing tab or window by tapping on the X icon. Alternatively, you can swipe up from the bottom of the screen and close all tabs or windows at once.
You can now browse the web normally with Safari’s default settings.
However, if you want to enhance your privacy and security even further, you might want to consider using an ad blocker extension like Ghostery.
Ghostery: The Ad Blocker Extension for Safari
While private browsing mode can help you hide your browsing activity from your iPad and websites, it cannot prevent third-party trackers from collecting your data and personalizing ads based on your online behavior.
These trackers can slow down your browsing speed, compromise your security, and invade your privacy.
That’s why we recommend using Ghostery, our powerful ad blocker extension for Safari that can block these trackers and protect your privacy while browsing the web.
Ghostery can also help you improve your browsing speed , save bandwidth, and reduce clutter on web pages.
Ghostery has many features and benefits that can enhance your private browsing experience on your iPad, such as:
- Blocking ads, trackers, and pop-ups from websites
- Showing you how many trackers are blocked on each website
- Providing you with detailed information about each tracker and its purpose
Ghostery gives you control over your personal data and online identity and offers a cleaner, faster, and a more private browsing experience.
You can use Ghostery while browsing the web in private browsing mode.
How to Enable Ghostery
To install Ghostery:
- Open Ghostery Privacy Ad Blocker in the App Store.
- Download by pressing Get .
- Follow the onscreen instructions.
To enable Ghostery on your iPad’s Safari browser, follow the animations in our guide or watch our YouTube video tutorial .
After installing and enabling Ghostery, you can enjoy a more private browsing experience with Ghostery’s ad blocking capabilities.
Private browsing mode is a handy feature that can help you browse the web without leaving any traces behind on your iPad.
However, it is not enough to protect you from third-party trackers that can collect your data and personalize ads based on your online behavior.
By combining Ghostery with Safari’s in private browsing feature, you can enjoy a more private and fast browsing experience on your iPad.
Get in touch if you have any questions. We’re always happy to help.