iOS 16 Safari – the biggest changes coming to your iPhone browser
iOS 16 Safari isn’t quite the radical reboot of the mobile web browser introduced by iOS 15. For starters, the tab bar stays in the same place, at the bottom of the screen by default. (That’s assuming you didn’t move the tab bar to the top of the screen the minute you upgraded to iOS 15.) But there are still a few changes in the updated iPhone software. from Apple – one that will be apparent right away and one that will take time to develop.
The change you can use the moment you install iOS 16 – whether you download the developer beta, plan to wait for the iOS 16 public beta to arrive in July, or don’t check out iOS 16 until later. the full version is coming in the fall – is Shared Tab Groups. This feature builds on a less controversial iOS 15 Safari addition, letting you take all those web pages you’ve bundled together and share them with other people.
Additionally, Apple is also using iOS 16 to introduce us to security keys, its attempt to usher in a passwordless future for web browsing. Instead of having to remember and enter a password for each site online, the updated version of Safari gives you a digital key linked to your user account and verified with biometric information such as Face ID on your iPhone. The change won’t happen overnight, but Apple is betting it leads to more secure browsing than what we’re currently experiencing.
These changes to the iOS 16 version of Safari don’t happen in a vacuum. They’re being implemented alongside similar updates to macOS Ventura and iPadOS 16, both of which are expected to arrive with the final release of Apple’s iPhone software this fall. Here’s what we know about the iPhone implementation of these updates based on Apple’s iOS 16 preview, and what people who’ve used the developer beta have said about Safari.
iOS 16 Safari: shared tab groups
As we mentioned, Tab Groups came to Safari with last year’s iOS 15 update, and while I thought the feature was better suited to the Mac, it was still useful for projects. search to group related web pages. At the very least, Safari tab groups have brought some organization to the iPhone’s default web browser.
With iOS 16, tab groups also support collaboration features. Shared Tab Groups are the great addition to Safari that does exactly what its name implies – you can take tab groups you’ve put together and share them with other people. They can add their own browser tabs, contributing to your research project.
The benefits of shared tab groups should be apparent. If you’re planning a vacation, you and your partner can swap tabs containing possible accommodations, things to do, and travel information. You can share research with other students on a school project or web pages relevant to a work project you are collaborating on with colleagues. As with tab groups, the shared version syncs across the various Apple devices you own (assuming they’re all running the latest software updates released by Apple this year).
Sharing tab groups is as easy as tapping the share button next to the tab group name and selecting who you want to share with. The feature promises real-time collaboration – you’ll see the icons of people in your sharing group on the tabs they’re viewing, and you’ll be able to see any changes made as you go. You can share tab groups via Messenger, as part of the chat app’s new collaboration features in iOS 16.
Other Tab Groups Improvements in iOS 16 Safari
Shared tab groups are making headlines, but that’s not the only improvement Apple is making to this particular feature. You can now distinguish your different tab groups with their own personalized start page. This includes a different background image for each group as well as group-specific favorites. Additionally, iOS 16 Safari supports pinned tabs for your different tab groups.
iOS 16 Safari Security Keys
In May, Apple joined Google and Microsoft in announcing expanded support for the FIDO passwordless login standard. iOS 16 Safari is giving the first fruits of this enhanced support in the form of passkeys, which are meant to remove passwords when you log into websites and apps.
The problem with passwords – besides the fact that not everyone uses password best practices – is that they can be obtained through phishing and other social engineering attacks if you are not not vigilant. And even if you are and use one of the best password managers out there, someone could still hack into a database or company’s website and steal your login credentials that way. Security keys respond to this threat by associating a digital key with your user account and then asking you to confirm that you are logging in, either by fingerprint or face scan. (It’s Touch ID or Face ID, if you’re using Apple hardware.)
It’s unclear how important passkeys will be when iOS 16 launches – you imagine Apple will implement them first with its own websites and services – but Apple promises you’ll be able to sync them on all Apple devices you own through your iCloud Keychain. Additionally, Apple’s involvement with FIDO means you’ll be able to sign in to non-Apple devices by scanning a QR code with your phone and confirming your identity with Touch ID or Face ID.
In its preview of WWDC access keys in June, Apple described switching to the new login standard as a journey, which means passwords will stay with us for a bit longer. To that end, iOS 16 promises a few more password enhancements such as improvements to strong passwords generated in Safari. The Wi-Fi section of the settings also gets a new edit button that lets you review the Wi-Fi passwords stored on your phone so you can share them with others or delete them if you no longer need them. .