Are all iPhone browsers the same? You would be forgiven for thinking so. They have the same goal, look alike and perform identical tasks. But a browser isn’t just about surfing the web; what you enjoy matters. Whether it’s privacy, speed, or sync, there’s a browser to meet your needs.
The short answer for which browser you should use on your iPhone is whichever browser you use on your desktop or laptop. Matching mobile/desktop browsers are great for keeping your digital life in sync across all your devices. If you have a Windows machine at home and you browse with Edge, you’ll need the Edge app for your iPhone. If you use a Chromebook for school, the Google Chrome app is for you. And if you use multiple browsers in different places, you can always get one to match.
However, you should know that Apple requires all iOS browsers to run on WebKit. Although Edge and Chrome look like their desktop counterparts, they’re just branded versions of Safari. So in terms of performance there is not much difference. What matters are the unique features and compatibility with software you use elsewhere.
However, if you are someone who only uses a smartphone, want a different browser for your phone, or are looking for a nice additional feature like a crypto wallet or an offline media player, keep reading for see which browser has what you want.
Brave is more than just a privacy-centric mobile browser. It is a self-contained ecosystem that offers unique features such as a search engine, cryptocurrency wallet, media player, personalized news feed, and more. Brave Shields blocks third-party trackers from websites and advertisers while allowing users to register for the Courageous Rewards program by viewing advertisements tailored for them.
On top of all that, the app lets you subscribe to a Brave Firewall + VPN (provided by Guardian) which gives you an extra layer of security while you browse, shop, and scroll. You can get it for $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year.
Another thing Brave offers that other browsers lack is an integrated video call service similar to Google Meet and Skype. And, of course, you can sync the mobile app with your desktop browser. It’s great because it lets you pick up where you left off, no matter where you are or what device you’re using.
Chrome is the best mobile browser to use if you live in the Google ecosystem. And since most people are, it’s no wonder Chrome is the most used iPhone browser after Safari. The main drivers of its popularity are its performance, stability, and reliability. It easily syncs with the Chrome app on your desktop and other mobile devices. Thus, passwords, browsing history, bookmarks, etc. are at your fingertips, no matter what device you’re using.
The disadvantages of Chrome are the same as for all Google products: it follows everything you do. This is the price for such powerful tools for free. The quality of Google’s search results is unmatched, whether in Chrome or any other browser. However, if you’re tired of your searches and browsing history, you can always change the default search engine and lock down your privacy settings. However, this may diminish the usefulness of the tools you downloaded the app for in the first place.
If privacy is your main concern online, DuckDuckGo is probably your best bet. What started as a search engine that wouldn’t follow you is now a handy application that lets you surf the Internet without being spied on.
Given its simple premise, it’s no surprise that it’s a simple app. DuckDuckGo reduces bells and whistles to a bare minimum. The most impressive feature aside from the search engine is the little flame icon at the bottom of the interface. A tap on the fire closes all your open tabs and wipes all your browsing data from the earth forever.
And even if the search results are not as as good as google (but which are?), they’re about as good as you’ll get from other engines. I haven’t searched for anything on DuckDuckGo yet and wish I had used Google instead, which is more than I can say for many other search engines other than Google.
Edge is the perfect iPhone browser for people who have one foot in Microsoft and the other in Apple. Since Edge is the default browser on all Windows machines these days, it makes sense to match it to your iPhone. Once you sign in to your Microsoft account on the Edge mobile app, it syncs data such as passwords, browsing and search history, and other odds and ends with your browser. windows desktop. Unsurprisingly, Bing is your default search engine when using Edge, but you can change it to Google, Yahoo! or DuckDuckGo.
Additionally, Edge has a nifty feature called “Collections”. These are similar to bookmarks, except they are more contextual. For example, you can create a collection of potential Christmas gifts, news to read later, meal ideas, and just about anything you can imagine. Once a the collection exists on your phone, not only can you access it from your desktop browser, but you can also access it offline. It’s a handy feature if you’re out of range of your cell phone and want to catch up on the day’s news.
The Firefox browser has been around for nearly two decades now, so it’s no surprise that its mobile app is top-notch. It’s fast, syncs easily with your desktop browser, has a host of privacy protection featuresand has a highly personalized home screen.
Like most other mobile browsers, Google is your default search engine, and like other browsers, you can change it. Default options include Bing and DuckDuckGo. However, you can also use Firefox’s search bar to scan popular websites like Twitter, Amazon, and Wikipedia.
Firefox has a feature similar to Edge’s Collections called “Reading List”. If you’re browsing and come across an article you want to read later, it only takes a few clicks to put it on the reading list and come back to it when you have time. Moreover, Firefox hamburger menu provides several one-click features such as “Find in page”, “Copy link”, “Send link to device”, etc. in other applications.
If you have an iPhone, you have Safari and you can’t get rid of it. But there’s no shame in using what comes pre-installed on your phone. After all, Apple designed Safari with iPhone users in mind, optimized it for the Apple ecosystem, and made it simple enough for even the less tech-savvy among us to learn and use to their full potential.
However, it is light on the additional features found in some of the other browsers featured in this article. There are no collections, crypto wallets, specialized searches, or VPNs in Safari. Still, it covers the basics like password storage, web history sync, private browsing, bookmarks, download manager, and more, as well as the third-party browsers we’ve covered.
So if you don’t want to worry about which browser is the best or fastest, or which blocks the most cookies, and you just want a safe browser that works, Safari is probably the best choice for you.
The most surprising thing about Opera browser for iPhone is that it is very minimalistic. A stark contrast to their desktop browser, which is quite robust. Nonetheless, it’s a valid choice and probably the best option if you’re using Opera on your desktop.
Connecting your Opera mobile browser to your desktop is easy with the My Flow system. All you have to do is scan a QR code and everything syncs automatically.
One aspect where Opera shines is that it has the most choice of default search engines. Besides the usual suspects like Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo, you can also use foreign search engines like Baidu, Qwant, and Yandex. You also get more site-specific searches than Firefox. You can use Opera to analyze Amazon, eBay, IMDB and Wikipedia.
Like Brave, Opera offers a cryptocurrency wallet, making it easy to buy things with crypto right in your browser. This feature seems to be coming to all browsers on this list in the near future.