How to Change the Default Search Engine in Safari for iOS

iphone search engine safari
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This tutorial is only intended for users running the Safari Web browser on iPadiPhone or iPod touch devices.

Apple's Safari browser on the iOS operating system offers the ability to change its default search engine from Google to either Yahoo, Bing or DuckDuckGo. Modifying this setting can be achieved with just a few taps of the finger, and this tutorial walks you through the process.

To begin, tap the Settings icon, normally located towards the top of your device's Home Screen.

iOS's various Settings options will now be displayed. Scroll down a bit and select the option labeled Safari.

Safari's Settings screen should now be displayed. You will notice that the first option in the Search section, labeled Search Engine, contains the current value. This is typically set to the default choice, Google. To modify this setting, first select the Search Engine option.

A list of available search engines should now be visible. To activate a new default search engine within Safari, simply select that option. The active search engine will be accompanied by a check mark. This change takes effect immediately, or as soon as you begin a new browsing session. To return to Safari's main Settings window, tap on the Safari button located in the upper left-hand corner of your screen.

Other Search Settings

Also found within the browser's Search settings are the following options, each accompanied by an On/Off button.

Search Engine Suggestions: Presents suggested search terms as you type, obtained from the default engine.

Safari Suggestions: Offers suggestions as you type, derived from a combination of sources including iTunes, the App Store and the Web as a whole. Also provides some of your search data to Apple, including which suggestions you selected.

Quick Website Search: When you search within a particular website, Safari will store that data for future use; allowing you to then search that site directly from the Smart Search entry field in subsequent browser sessions.

Preload Top Hit: Safari will attempt to determine the best search result as you type, preloading that page ahead of time so that it renders in an instant if you do wind up selecting it. The determination process utilizes a combination of your browsing history and saved bookmarks.