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How to change the default browser on iPhone

iOS 14 has been released and it has quite a few new interesting features. A new iPhone release is still pending at this time but the OS update has some features worth checking out. One noteworthy feature in this new version is the ability to change the default browser on an iPhone.

Change default browser on iPhone

Make sure you’ve updated to iOS 14 before you try to change the default browser on your iPhone. 

1. Browser settings

  1. Install the browser that you want to use as the default browser on the iPhone.
  2. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  3. Scroll down to the browser that you want to set as the new default browser, and tap it.
  4. Tap the ‘Default Browser App’ option.
  5. Select the browser that you want to use from the list. 

2. Safari settings

You can also change the default browser from Safari’s own settings. The end result is the same.

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
  2. Scroll down and tap Safari.
  3. On Safari’s preferences page, tap Default Browser App.
  4. Select a default browser from the listed apps.

Browser not listed in default browser list

The ability to change the default browser on iOS is new and it depends on apps i.e., browsers to add support for it. If you do not see the ‘Default Browser App’ option when you visit the preferences for your browser in the Settings app, it means that it has not been updated to support this new feature.

The only thing you can do is to wait until the app is updated. At present, Chrome and Microsoft Edge can both be set as the default browser on iOS but it seems Firefox has not yet been updated. 

Default browser limitations

Changing the default browser on iOS is not the same as changing the default browser on a desktop. On the desktop, every single URL that users open, or any HTML file that is opened, opens in the default browser. On iOS, that’s not how it works.

Safari home screen shortcuts will still continue to open in Safari. Apps that can open links but do not have their own browser will continue to open the links in a Safari container. Apps like Facebook are excluded since they have their own browser built into the app.

These limitations may apply to other areas as well. Safari is a stock app that cannot be uninstalled so it will still handle certain web calls on your phone.

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