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8 iPhone browser apps you should use instead of Safari

iPhone browser apps
Digital Trends

By default, the Safari web browser is available on every iPhone, including the iPhone 15 series. Nevertheless, several other web-browsing options can be found on the App Store, each with at least one unique feature that distinguishes it from the others. While some web browser apps like Google Chrome, DuckDuckGo, and Microsoft Edge might already be familiar to you, others such as Aloha and Arc Search may not be.

If you’re looking for a Safari alternative, here are our favorite iPhone browser apps you should consider using instead.

Google Chrome

Google Chrome for iPhone.
Digital Trends

Google Chrome is the most popular browser in the world. It stands out as offering one of the best user interfaces for newcomers. Its rapid browsing speed, integration with Google Search, and robust security measures against malware and phishing attempts contribute to its popularity.

An essential feature of Chrome is the ability to sign in with your Google Account, which allows you to synchronize bookmarks and browsing history across devices where Chrome is active. Chrome also includes a password manager that stores website login details, simplifying the login process without the need to recall numerous credentials. Users can also leverage Google services like Gmail, Google Drive, and Google Photos to ensure password accessibility across these platforms for convenience.

In short, Google Chrome emerges as the choice for individuals seeking a browsing experience across their range of devices within the Google ecosystem. If you’re a big Google user, this is the way to go.

Download Google Chrome

Arc Search

Screenshot showing the Arc Search app for iPhone.
Digital Trends

Arc Search is the latest addition to the selection of mobile web browsers, and it evolved from its desktop version, which was initially launched in 2023. Arc is unique from other web browsers because it uses artificial intelligence (AI) to perform searches on your behalf. Although it may take some time to get used to, the result is an exciting spin on search.

By utilizing the app’s “Browse for Me” functionality, you can view a typical search page with the AI to gather information from six different sources. This will provide a personalized webpage showcasing all the essential details required to answer your search query.

If you do a traditional search, Arc makes it simple to choose your search engine among a list of choices, starting with your iPhone’s default web browser.

Spaces is an exciting feature of Arc Search that lets you organize tabs and themes for a personalized look. Perhaps best of all, Arc Search prioritizes security and privacy and doesn’t track browser activity or search history. It’s one of the more unique Safari alternatives, but if you want a wholly new web-browsing experience, it’s well worth checking out.

Download Arc Search

Microsoft Edge

Screenshot showing Microsoft Edge for iPhone.
Digital Trends

If you’re already using Microsoft Edge on your Mac or PC, you might find the Microsoft Edge browser helpful. It offers password monitoring, ad tracker blocking, and other features many browsers lack. You can use the InPrivate browsing feature to browse the web without saving your browsing history, cookies, or other data. Microsoft Edge also includes AI capabilities through its Copilot tool, which makes searching easier.

With Microsoft Edge, you can sync your favorites, passwords, and browsing data between your mobile device and other devices. You can also earn rewards points through the Microsoft Rewards program, which you can redeem for various benefits like Starbucks gift cards, a free month of Xbox Game Pass, and more.

Microsoft Edge, even with its AI tools, is best considered a traditional browsing tool for mobile and desktop. That alone means it’s not for everyone. Nonetheless, it’s reliable and stable and gets the job done.

Download Microsoft Edge

Aloha Browser

Screenshot showing the Aloha browser on iPhone.
Digital Trends

Aloha is a web browser that also acts as a private VPN. It comes with an Adblock Plus plug-in to block annoying ads. While it is free, it’s recommended that you purchase one of the premium options after the one-week free trial.

Aloha’s free version includes a VPN that encrypts your internet traffic, making it less likely for you to experience a data breach while browsing anonymously. The built-in ad blocker blocks ads and trackers, improving your browser speed and protecting your privacy. The incognito mode creates a private browsing session that doesn’t save cookies. In addition to its primary function as a VPN service and web browser, Aloha also offers a media player, profile manager, and a Web3 cryptocurrency wallet.

By upgrading to Aloha Premium, you can modify your VPN country selection and configure the VPN to start automatically with the browser. The premium package also extends VPN protection to all devices and includes other premium features. It also removes the occasional ad you’ll see with the free version.

If you want to use Aloha, keep in mind that it currently lacks a desktop version. This means you won’t be able to synchronize your passwords or browsing history across all your devices. If that’s not an issue for you, definitely give this one a look.

Download Aloha

Brave Browser

Brave browser on iPhone.
Digital Trends

AI technology has now been integrated into the Brave browser — making it one of the better Safari alternatives out there. Brave, also available for desktops, offers features similar to other options on this list — such as Adblock, a rewards system, and a crypto wallet. It also includes a built-in VPN service as a feature, with new users eligible for a free week’s trial of the VPN.

Having used Brave for quite some time, I am consistently impressed by its user interface, which stands out for its creativity. I also find that the built-in news feature enhances the overall mobile web-browsing experience.

On a less positive note, while the Brave VPN functions as expected, it is worth noting that it is priced higher than other options on the market. This aspect should be considered before deciding on an in-app purchase. Even so, Brave still stands out as a fantastic Safari replacement.

Download Brave

Opera Browser

Opera browser for iPhone.
Digital Trends

Opera has been around for a while and has stayed relevant by incorporating new technology as it arrives. A recent enhancement to Opera is an AI feature called Aria, which aims to assist users in navigating the internet effectively by understanding their queries and responding in natural language.

Aria is currently kept separate from the rest of the browser. This setup isn’t necessarily a drawback; it’s simply Opera’s chosen design. In addition to the AI component, Opera includes web browser functions like bookmarks, privacy mode, synchronization, and more. Opera also boasts an Opera Fast Action Button (FAB), a multi-functional tool that makes navigating and switching between recently opened tabs easier. Finally, Opera provides a VPN service that comes with privacy tools at no cost. Combine all of that with a clean and simple interface, and there’s a lot to like with this one.

Download Opera

DuckDuckGo Private Browser

Screenshots showing DuckDuckGo on iPhone.
Digital Trends

DuckDuckGo is an exceptional web browser with a reputation for being the ultimate guardian of user privacy. With its advanced capabilities, DuckDuckGo is designed to keep your online identity under wraps and protect you from the prying eyes of third-party advertisers and data collectors. It does this by automatically blocking trackers hidden in the websites you visit, providing you with a safe and stress-free browsing experience.

DuckDuckGo’s user interface is also user-friendly and allows you to personalize your settings according to your preferences. You can turn off images, use the Fire Button to quickly clear your tabs and browsing data, and customize other settings to make your browsing experience seamless.

One of DuckDuckGo’s most remarkable features is its search engine, which doesn’t track your search history. This means you can search for anything you want without worrying about your searches being stored or used for targeted advertisements. If privacy is a top concern for you, DuckDuckGo should be at the top of your list when searching for a Safari replacement.

Download DuckDuckGo

Firefox Focus

Screenshot showing Firefox Focus on iPhone.
Digital Trends

Firefox Focus is another browser that prioritizes privacy. The browser blocks trackers and ads by default, ensuring that companies do not gather browsing data and habits. This aspect proves beneficial for users who value their privacy.

The browser accelerates page loading times by disabling trackers and data collection, resulting in a better browsing journey. Using Firefox Focus can also reduce mobile data consumption, which is advantageous for users with data plans.

Download Firefox Focus

Which Safari alternative should you choose?

iPhone Settings app with Safari highlighted.
Jesse Hollington / Digital Trends

If you’re not satisfied with the default browser on your iPhone and are looking for an alternative, it’s worth exploring some of the options available.

To make an informed decision, download a few of these browsers and test them to see which works best for you. Consider factors such as speed, ease of use, privacy features, and level of customization. Once you’ve tried them, you’ll be better equipped to choose the browser that best suits your needs.

Happy browsing!

Editors' Recommendations

Bryan M. Wolfe
Bryan M. Wolfe has over a decade of experience as a technology writer. He writes about mobile.
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