How to Enable Private Browsing on Safari in iOS 15

By following these simple steps, users can easily enable Private Browsing on Safari for iPhones that have been updated to iOS 15 and above.

Apple made several changes to Safari in iOS 15, and among them was the way iPhone users can enable private browsing. Naturally, people were puzzled when the option to switch to a private tab seemingly disappeared from their browsers. The good news is that Private Browsing is still easily accessible on Safari, although the option is even more hidden now than it was on iOS 14. A private or incognito tab allows users to surf the internet without saving. their browsing history. It also prevents the browser from saving fields that might be filled in and is a handy feature to hide search history on a shared device.


With iOS 15, Apple has completely redesigned its Safari browser. The biggest design change was the address/search bar, which was moved from its usual place at the top of a tab to the bottom. Fortunately, Apple offers the option to revert to the old design through the settings menu. Apart from that, Safari also has new features like customizable tab groups and the ability to swipe between tabs. Unfortunately for Apple, the release of iOS 15 was also riddled with bugs. Safari in particular was susceptible to a major security flaw, which allowed hackers to view users’ browsing history through the browser’s IndexedDB API. This issue was quickly resolved with the release of iOS 15.3.

Related: How to Customize Safari New Tab Start Page on iPhone

On iPhones running iOS 15, there are two ways to enable private browsing on Safari. The easiest way to open a new private tab is to long-press the Tabs button (two overlapping square icons) located at the right end of the address bar. In the pop-up window that appears, click “New Private Tab”. Another way to open a private tab is to tap the Tabs button once. On the button that says “1 tab”, click to expand the view, press “Private” and then “Done”.

Use private tabs on Safari

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When Private Browsing is enabled on Safari, the color of the address/search bar changes to let users know they are in incognito mode. If an iPhone has Light Mode enabled, the address bar in a private tab will change from white to gray. On the other hand, if it uses the dark mode, the address bar changes from gray to black. According to Apple, in private browsing mode, Safari won’t remember pages visited, search history, or even autofill information after the tab is closed. Apple also does not keep cross-site tracking statistics in this mode. This adds another layer of security to Safari’s existing anti-tracking protection.

In private browsing on a iPhone running iOS 15, clicking the Tabs button displays all open private tabs at a glance. After that, users can tap the “x” icon on each tab to manually close the ones they no longer need. Alternatively, a long press on “Done” displays the option to close all open private tabs at once.

Next: How to replace Safari with another browser app on iPhone

Source: Apple

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