The best safari alternative web browser for the iPhone, you cannot single out anyone in particular as the iOS App Store is full of third party browsers. Before we go to the iOS Appstore, there are two prime concerns. Is our search for smooth, speedy browsing or the protection of our personal information with a focus on privacy while on the web or both? The simple answer is both.
There are several such browsers; some offer an easy to use interface for fast web browsing while others have a range of features with customizations so that you can have the best web browsing experience.
Safari is the default browser pre-installed on every new iOS device, but due to it having more security risks or susceptibilities, several alternatives have sprung up.
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16 Best Web Browsers for iPhone (Safari Alternatives)
The numbers of alternatives to Safari that offer secure surfing of the web in public places are many like Google Chrome, Opera Touch, Dolphin, Ghostery, etc., depending purely on personal taste. Let us consider the various safari alternatives for iPhone one by one below:
1. Google Chrome
It was launched way back in 2008 and has become the most popular browser to date, which can be downloaded free of cost. It is one of the best alternatives to Safari with a host of features. It enables cross-platform syncing and is available for those who like to work on multiple devices running on different operating systems as it can sync with not only Windows and android but even with iOS devices.
With excellent tab management, using Chrome, you can quickly create new tabs, rearrange them, and move between them in a 3D manager view. Using the Google Chrome browser on the desktop can enable you to sync the browsing history, and all your bookmarks, across all devices, on your iPhone and iPad also by signing in with your Gmail ID.
Chrome also enables the translation of web pages from foreign languages when you are on the move, so you do not have to worry about the language in use. It can also continue to translate web pages without interrupting an already running computer program.
Chrome includes, for free, an in-built voice-search mechanism, so that you can search the web, entering the search inquiries with your voice, even when using an older iPhone that doesn’t support Siri. It also enables ‘privately browsing’ to privately browse the web using the chrome software built-in Incognito Mode.
So we see, Google Chrome, once properly synced, is exceptionally quick and grants you ingress to nearly all data associated with your account, including passwords, search history, bookmarks, open tabs, and the like.
In spite of the above features, every system also has some drawbacks. Firstly it is not the default browser; secondly, it can be a bit of a CPU hog, slowing down the system performance and drains the system battery too. Additionally, some iOS features built into Safari, such as Apple Pay and the general integration, are not replicated in this browser. However, the Pros overweigh the cons making it one of the best browsers for the iPhone.
2. Firefox Focus
Firefox is not an anonymous name, and its browser Firefox Focus is available for free to download. This web browser is best for those who are very casual in sharing their smartphones with others. Much before chrome came into limelight, Mozilla was at the helm of the web browser revolution.
This web browser emphasizes primarily on privacy, and you don’t need to go in separately for an incognito mode to take care of trackers. Without any change in its settings, it blocks all types of web trackers.
Using Firefox focus, you can sync your passwords, history, open tabs, and bookmarks with all devices having Mozilla account. All the features of Firefox on the desktop like private browsing etc. reflect for iOS on your iPhone.
This private browsing mode prevents remembering your browsing history. It will also allow the deletion of any saved information and account with one tap, putting you in complete control of your internet history.
Another privacy-related setting in Firefox, which bears a great significance, is the integration of Touch ID & Passcodes. So when you want access to your saved data, Firefox will ask you for a Passcode or fingerprint.
Firefox gives you the option of whether or not you want to allow it to work with a third-party keyboard too. Some third-party keyboards can transmit things that you type back to the developer, which may hamper privacy. Firefox also blocks all kinds of ads, social and tracking data, analytics, etc. It is for these reasons it is considered the most security-focused browsers on iOS.
With its in-built reader view, you can focus on your reading, without any distractions, which it removes from the web page, thus enabling distraction-free reading on the web page. It is not a heavyweight browser but is a very basic browser, more on the leaner side comprising of just an address bar, sans the history, menus, bookmarks, or even tabs.
To disallow change in the default browser on your iPhone, you can share a link from Safari to Firefox on your Apple iPhone. For those iPhone users who want to hide their identity from the online world, it is the browser for the asking, which facilitates this feature.
A lack of history, menus, or even tabs is a major drawback of this web browser, but this can’t be helped if the primary requirement is the need for the most security-focused browsers on iOS.
It is of the best web browsers for iPhone and perfect for those who are very strong in their resolve to adhere to anonymity and want to have privacy avoiding unwanted bombardment of advertisements, etc. on their iOS devices. It is powered by DuckDuckGo as its default search engine rather than the usual search engines like Bing, Yahoo, or Google for added privacy.
This browser also features tracker blocking and disables cookies and caches, too, with just the use of a single click. There are no signups and no data collection by the app itself unless you opt for it to allow Ghostery to compile its database.
It is not a very fast mobile browser as compared to many others on this list, but it is also not that bad that you will notice it. To get something, you must be ready to lose something, implying that if you want your browsing history to be kept safe, then you must be prepared to sacrifice slightly on speed.
As far as trackers are concerned, the browser tracker control will spot them and warn you with a red icon if a tracker is trying to track you online. It enables you to view the bottom right-hand corner of the web page, a list of trackers with its red-colored numbering. You can enable or disable them, effectively protecting yourself from getting tracked online.
The browser additionally offers a Ghost mode, which allows further privacy protection by preventing the websites you visit from appearing in your browser history. It also offers very good protection against phishing attacks.
The developers have added another feature just for experimental purposes called Wi-Fi Connection Protection. This feature is designed to monitor ad trackers in any app you use on a particular Wi-Fi network.
Ghostery’s user interface is also not very appealing. Though initially, the web browser was visualized by its team of developers as a tracker blocking add-on only, today it is one of the best privacy browsers for iPhone and is a must-have for those who prefer privacy over speed and design.
4. Dolphin Mobile browser
This is free to download, feature-rich, remarkable browser for the iPhone users. With plenty of features, it makes a great alternative to the Safari web browser, also making it the most favored browser amongst its users.
With a gesture-based navigational control, it enables you to visit your favorite websites, go to a new webpage, and refresh the one you are on. With a right to left swipe, you can open new tabs, whereas, with a left to right swipe, you can access bookmarks and navigation shortcuts.
The app using recognizable personalized symbols lets you draw your custom gestures directly on the screen, e.g., when you write the alphabet ‘N’ on the screen, a new tab automatically opens up, or writing the letter ‘T’ you can open the main Twitter homepage.
The browser also features the Sonar voice search and control option. This can be activated by simply shaking the device through a clever shake and speak option, but it involves a nominal cost to download this feature. The Dolphin browser also gives you the flexibility to choose from plenty of themes.
It also offers a speed dial feature, using which you can visit routinely accessed websites with great ease in no time. It has an inbuilt QR code scanner next to the URL bar and also supports a night mode feature that dims the screen to a suitable level for browsing at night without disturbing others around you.
Using the Dolphin Connect feature, it can share bookmarks, history, and other web pages with Facebook, Twitter, Evernote, AirDrop, and other pocket options. It can also speedily sync and save your password and a lot of other data across many proprietary devices like mobiles and desktops.
The large number of features that make it one of the best web browsers for iPhone simplifying the browsing experience also many times makes its interface more confusing, due to the same reasons, mainly for those who are using it for the first time.
5. Opera Touch
Opera Touch was designed for use by the people who are always on the move and is considered to be one of the fastest browsers for iPhone users. Being lightweight and designed to work on limited bandwidth, it is best for those who are on the lookout for speed coupled with an easy to use interface.
It is a relatively new browser that started in 2004 and held only one percent of the web browser desktop market. This browser is a simple open-source project to fetch web content through a proxy server. With a stripped-back, mobile-first approach, Opera Touch has a built-in Crypto wallet, for iPhone, to handle crypto-currency such as Ethereum.
It is in no way as feature-rich as Chrome or as efficient as Safari. However still, even on the most crowded networks, it can quickly compress data and similar content by up to 90 percent before downloading and displaying the webpages.
This browser syncs smoothly with the Opera Mini browser and has a ‘Flow’ feature enabling, by a simple scan of a QR code, to and fro movement of articles, data, and web links even on the go without any interruption. With a built-in ad blocker and pop-up stopper, you can block unwanted ads and pop-ups, which avoids undue loading and, as a result, speeds up web browsing.
During travel using the Opera Touch browsers bar code scanning property, you can scan the product’s product bar code of your interest and easily look it up over the internet. Similarly, its voice search feature also helps and makes things a lot more comfortable to overcome the problem of having to type when on the move.
The full-screen mode of the Touch Opera browser can enable viewing webpages and other statistics indicating the amount of data used in a particular session or during its entire period of use of the web browser on your phone.
Opera Touch also provides end-to-end encryption to your data to shield your delicate information and save it from the always prying eyes on the internet. The iPhone browser also has a fast Action Button for easy one-hand usage, which comes very handy in crowded buses and trains while traveling.
The only drawback of the Opera Touch browser which comes to mind is its inability to bookmark requisite data in various folders and links to enable its users to refer back to it quickly when needed at a later date or time. So, if you are habitual of bookmarking of data for future reference then this is not the recommended browser for you.
6. Aloha Browser
For privacy-oriented users whose main concern is and only is privacy, the search ends here. Aloha browser’s main focus is on privacy, and it hides your footmarks on the internet with the help of an in-built, free, and unlimited VPN. It is one of the best Safari alternatives in 2020.
This iPhone browser, using hardware acceleration, displays pages up to two times faster than other mobile browsers. Hardware acceleration is the process by which certain computing tasks are offloaded onto specialized hardware components within the system, by an application, which works with greater efficiency than the software running on the CPU alone.
This web browser allows ad-free, anonymous browsing of the internet. It also a paid version is known as Aloha Premium with more advanced features for hardcore privacy-focused individuals. The Aloha browser also has built-in VR players enabling the playing of VR videos.
Its user interface provides a simple and straightforward interface similar to that of Google Chrome. The web browser does not register any activity, making it the best iPhone browser with no data traces for anyone, working anonymously.
7. Puffin Browser
When you talk about the top-notch web browsers for iOS, the Puffin browser is a fast iPhone Web Browser on the net, which cannot go unnoticed. It is not free to download, but you can do so after making a nominal payment for using its services.
This browser can shift the workload from the resource-limited iOS device to cloud servers. Due to this, even the websites which are most resources consuming run smoothly on your iPhone and iPad.
Its proprietary compression functionality using the compression algorithm reduces up to 90% of your bandwidth during browsing, compressing the page & keeping the page load time to the minimum, saving on server connect time through faster loading.
The Puffin web browser includes an Adobe Flash player. This multimedia software platform enables support to flash pages to stream and view videos, audios, multimedia, and rich internet applications on iPhone devices. The streaming quality and image resolution can be adjusted, as per requirement, for the web pages.
The Puffins browser automatically concurs with chrome bookmarks. Security-wise, to safeguard the data against hacking, the Puffin Browser provides a strong end to end encryption to all the data being transferred from the browser to the server.
The Puffins browser, it can be said with conviction that with its virtual trackpad and dedicated video player, offers an experience that is unique to its users in web browsing.
8. Maxthon Cloud Browser
It is a free to download, lightweight cloud-based iOS web browser for use with iPhones. It comes with multiple features, and being cloud-based, you can sync your data with both iOS and non-iOS devices also, enabling the use of your data at all times.
It has a built-in adblocker to avoid unnecessary pop-ups and annoying ads in the midst of your work. This helps you to maintain your work tempo without any disturbances. The night mode facility enables you to browse the internet at night without any strain on your eyes.
It also has a note-taking tool through which you can operate in tandem, making notes easily even while on the web. This tool enables you to collect and save any content you see on the web with just a single tap. You can read, edit, and organize your collection of notes, taken during browsing, even offline.
The browser also facilitates the installation of extensions, and you can install a variety of extensions to increase your productivity by getting the most out of the browser. Its ability of data syncing with multiple platforms and its inbuilt password manager are some of the best features of this browser, making it the most popular browser amongst users of iOS devices.
9. Microsoft Edge
Like many other web browsers, Microsoft edge is also available for free to download and is worth downloading due to a host of useful features it incorporates. The only condition for using this browser is that you must have a Microsoft account. Microsoft’s own Edge Chromium is available with multiple OS like Windows 10, macOS and you can get Edge for iOS too.
Edge’s new version with a bit of a redesign recently in January 2020 for iOS is worth its use and requires a look if you have not done so for quite some time. It enables iPhone and windows 10 PC to link up between themselves and swap webpages, bookmarks, Cortona settings, and many other things. So you see, it enables saving of data across devices, making your web browsing experience seamless, automatically syncs all of your favorites, passwords, etc.
Microsoft Edge also includes features such as tracking prevention, so as far as trackers are concerned, the browser tracker control will spot them and stop them from tracking you. It also facilitates the blocking of ads and gives you the flexibility to browse in private.
So we see Microsoft Edge is a full-fledged browser fraught with multiple features like tabs, password manager, reading list, language translator, and lot many excellent additional attributes and specifics. It’s a great browser to have and use, but the only thing that is not necessarily a drawback is that it has a slightly heavily built and stocky design. Secondly, it necessitates having a Microsoft account to use this browser.
10. DuckDuckGo Browser
DuckDuckGo, also abbreviated as DDG, is a privacy-focused web browser. And it is one of the best web browsers for iPhone, in fact, it is one of the best alternatives for Safari as it’s a privacy-focused browser. If privacy is the prime requirement in your list, then you have come to the right place and need to look no further. It is a multi-lingual search engine created by Gabriel Weinberg.
With the main emphasis on privacy, this web browser offers enhanced encryption to enable your personal information to stay safeguarded against hacking or data trackers. This browser ensures your browsing session remains private by blocking all the hidden third-party trackers.
This private browser for mobile is available on iOS phones as well as Android devices. It offers many customizations, and you can add a private web search to your most favored web browser or search directly at duckduckgo.com.
The browser comes equipped with the DuckDuckGo search engine, tracker blocker, encryption enforcer, and many more. It works on a very simple and straight forward privacy and does not collect or share any personal information of its users and nor does it track you on the web. The government also can’t get your data or information, as there is none. DDG also does not involve itself with blogs, news images, or books but is purely into core web search.
Since it is free to download a web browser, it makes money differently by selling ads against search inquiries. In case you want a car or are searching for a new car, it will show you car ads and earn in this indirect way from organizations whose ads its displays against your query. So it does no personalized advertising for companies or products but only acts against questions.
11. Adblock Browser 2.0
This browser for iOS is easy to use, free to download web browsers only on the AppStore. It can be customized as per needs and requirements, making it easy for users to reduce mobile web ads, including ads on videos watched within the Adblock Browser. This has enabled users to keep away from annoying ads when at work, making them a happier lot.
It is a lightweight 31.1 MB web browser that uses iOS 10.0 operating system and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPad Touch. It is a multi-lingual web browser using languages like English, Italian, Dutch, French, German, Russian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and many more. It is also available in Indian origin languages like Malayalam, Hindi, Gujarati, Bengali, Tamil, and Telegu, etc.
With a simple tap, you can access the Ghost Mode wherein it will not store any browser or search history or temporary files and will wipe all history of the browsing session. This browser disables tracking when online. It also enables smoother scrolling to search the web quickly, safely, and privately.
One of the most popular ad blocker with more than 400 million downloads. Due to its ad-blocking feature, it also protects against malware and saves data and battery. With smart tab functionality and an easy to use a keyboard, it is automatic and easy to use and understand.
The major drawback observed was that it has become unstable and used to crash regularly, bringing its popularity drastically down. It is nice to know that its promoters have fixed the bug off late and brought it back to its previous level of popularity and reputation.
12. Yandex Browser
Yandex is free to download a web browser developed by the Russian web search company Yandex. It is a popular alternative to the Safari iPhone Web Browser and has outnumbered Google in Russia. It is a safe and secure browser giving tough competition to Google in Russia.
This web browser is known for Loading Web Pages Faster and, in its special turbo mode, speeds up the page load time. It also is a lightweight software working with minimum data needs and usage. It incorporates all the basic functions required of an iOS web browser.
You can search the internet through its voice search feature in three different languages, i.e., Russian, Turkish, and Ukrainian. You can utilize the turbo technology of Opera software and speed up your web browsing in case of slow internet. For webpage security, you can use the Yandex security system and check the downloaded files using the Kaspersky antivirus.
It also integrates different types of keyboards using omnibox, which combines the browser’s regular address bar with the Google search box, enabling the use of certain text commands. As an example, if you are a normal gmail.com user and start to enter ‘gmail.com’ with a Russian or German language keyboard, on pressing enter, you will be taken to gmail.com and not to any German or Russian website search page.
So we see with all the necessary functions for a browser, Yandex has made a name for itself not only in Russia but has garnered worldwide acceptance.
13. Brave browser
Brave browser is another good browser known in the market for its major focus on privacy. It is also considered to be a very fast browser and, by default, configures settings or installs third-party extensions to meet your privacy needs.
It incorporates HTTPS Everywhere, a security feature that encrypts data movement with your confidentiality in mind. The brave browser blocks harmful ads and gives you the flexibility to set the number of ads you want to see per hour.
This browser is approx. Six times faster than Chrome, Firefox, or even Safari when used for iPhone and other iOS and Android devices. It does not have any ‘private mode’ like many other browsers but allows you to hide your browsing history from prying eyes when using the internet.
Similar to frequent flier reward points as in airlines, it enables you to earn Brave rewards in the form of tokens for viewing privacy-respecting ads when browsing the net. You can use the earned tokens to support the web creator, but maybe very soon, you’ll be able to spend tokens on premium content, gift cards, and more on self, too, as the designers are working on making such provisions at the earliest.
The Brave browser lets you use Tor right in a tab that hides your history and your location by routing your browsing through several servers before it reaches the intended destination. It uses shallow Memory space much less than most browsers, making website loading faster.
14. Onion Web Browser
Onion browser is free and open-source software for iOS, which enables browsing the internet over the Tor VPN browser. It helps access the internet with complete privacy and safety at no extra cost. It disables trackers and also keeps you safe from insecure wireless networks and ISPs when browsing the World Wide Web over the internet. Those .onion sites that are only accessible over Tor can also be connected using this browser.
The browser supports HTTPS Everywhere, a security feature that encrypts data movement to ensure safe data trafficking over the web. This browser, based on your preferences, blocks text and automatically clears cookies and tabs. While using cookies, it is recommended to be careful as some cyber attacks can hijack cookies, interrupting the browsing sessions.
It does not support certain multimedia activities and blocks video files and video streaming. At times you might come across a situation where the browser might not work on networks with advanced network restrictions. In such a situation, you will have to force quit and restart the browser or try bridging.
Bridging is a process where devices are allowed to connect through the connection of the networks they are on when it is not possible to connect directly using a router.
15. Private Browser
This VPN Proxy browser is an available free to download, private, and secure web browser that can be relied upon for privately browsing the internet. This browser is the fastest private iOS browser offering free unlimited VPN on your iPhone.
The browser does not log any of your activity when you browse through it, and there is no activity recorded once you exit the browser. Since there is no record of your activity, so the question of sharing with any third party also does not arise.
16. Tor VPN Browser
For unlimited tunneled private access to the internet that features both VPN + TOR, then the Tor VPN browser is the right place you are at. It is free to download browser with most of its features are available through in-app purchases.
It is similar to your traveling in your car. Anyone from the open sky can see your car, but when you enter into a tunnel with multiple exits, you can easily disappear from unwanted eyes and leave through any door. Similarly, a VPN hides your going online and preventing anyone from seeing what you do.
Tunneling allows data transfer from one network to another by encapsulating it for security reasons and then transfer the secured data from one system to another, enabling communication of the private network with the public network such as the internet. This browser protects your identity online, enabling anonymous browsing.
So a VPN tunnel connects your smartphone (or any other devices like laptop, computer, or tablet) to another network in which your IP address is hidden, and all the data you generate while surfing the web is encrypted.
Connecting, not directly to websites but using a VPN tunnel can disable hackers or other snoopers like other businesses or government bodies from tracking your online activity or viewing your IP address, which like your actual address, identifies your location while you’re online. This is of use when you log onto the internet using public Wi-Fi at hotels, restaurants, or common study joints like libraries, etc.
The Tor VPN browser, due to certain restrictions on Apple’s iOS platform, has not yet released an official Tor Browser for iPhone and iPad users, but the iOS users can use the Onion Browser from the Apple Play Store to browse the web anonymously. Tor Browser gives you access to .onion web sites available within the Tor network.
Tor Browser is completely legal to use, though, in some countries, it is either illegal or blocked by national authorities. This browser detects and blocks pop-ups and ads. It deletes cookies, cache, and third-party data automatically once the application exits.
To conclude, there is no dearth of web browsers for iPhone as we can see a whole lot of them described above. We have seen these browsers meet most of the customized requirements with minimized data consumption, and if someone is purely looking for privacy as his priority, you have not to look any further.
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These are the best web browsers on the list for iPhone users, but the final call is left to the user to take a pick as it all boils down to personal preference and meeting of your needs and wants. Those interested in downloading may go to the Apple Play Store as most of them are available there for free.