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How to close all tabs in Safari on iOS

Mobile apps are tricky; they need to have a full set of features but those features need to be easy to use with a touch screen. There’s no mouse, trackpad, or physical keyboard that can help you interact with it more easily. To that end, the various features and settings a mobile app has aren’t always easy to discover. Safari for iOS lets you open multiple tabs like any modern browser would. You can easily close a tab by going to the tab switcher and tapping the close button or swiping left on it. If you’ve got one too many tabs open though, this can get tedious. There’s a simple way to close all tabs in Safari, if you know where to look.

Close all tabs in Safari

Open Safari. Tap and hold on the new tab/tab switcher button at the bottom right. Give it a second and you’ll see a menu with options for closing the current tab, or closing all tabs that are open. Tap the ‘Close All Tabs’ option from the menu.

That’s all you need to do. All tabs that are open, whether they’re normal tabs or private ones, will be closed.

This feature is going to work on most iPhone and iPad models. It doesn’t matter much if they have 3D touch, or haptic feedback. This is a fairly old Safari feature so don’t worry if you have an iOS device that isn’t running iOS 13, or even iOS 12. You’ll find the feature is present on much older versions of iOS. It’s unlikely that you have a device that’s still running iOS 10 but even if you are, the version of Safari that’s on it will allow you to close multiple tabs at once.

In terms of design, Safari hasn’t changed much. Apple’s efforts with regards to improving iOS have centered around the Camera app, and the Photos app. Apple doesn’t neglect Safari completely and did add support for content blockers a while ago but the design hasn’t been updated in some time. A fresh design might help make essential features like this more obvious.

It’s unclear how many people will figure this out on their own, how many will stumble on it by accident, and how many are going to have to look up how to do this but there’s no denying that the option could be a bit more obvious. If nothing, the tab switcher should offer a method to close all tabs in Safari like it does with the search tab feature.

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