iOS 8: A Take Control Crash Course
by Josh Centers

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Table of Contents

Going on Safari

Besides App Store and Messages, Safari is arguably iOS’s most important app. It’s your window to the Web. iOS 8 brings a number of improvements, like Suggested Sites to save you from search, the addition of the DuckDuckGo search engine, and browser extensions.

To start navigating the new features in iOS 8 Safari (and get a refresher on a few important older features), let’s start with a look at the controls at the top of the Safari window .

① 	The top of an iPad Safari window, from left to right: **(A)** Back/Forward (hold Back for a list of previous pages), **(B)** Show Bookmarks (access bookmarks, Reading List, History, and Shared Links), **(C)** Address/Search, **(D)** Suggested Sites list (a new Safari feature), **(E)** Clear Text, **(F)** Share, **(G)** New Tab (hold to see recently closed tabs), and **(H)** Pages (view open tabs).

① The top of an iPad Safari window, from left to right: (A) Back/Forward (hold Back for a list of previous pages), (B) Show Bookmarks (access bookmarks, Reading List, History, and Shared Links), (C) Address/Search, (D) Suggested Sites list (a new Safari feature), (E) Clear Text, (F) Share, (G) New Tab (hold to see recently closed tabs), and (H) Pages (view open tabs).

If you can’t see the controls shown above, flick down from the middle of the screen. To push the controls back up out of the way, reverse the action by flicking up.

Note: Apple now allows developers to extend Safari with their own apps’ capabilities. This feature is so awesome that it warrants its own chapter: Managing Share Sheets in iOS 8.

Searching in Safari

The Address/Search box allows you to search in several ways:

② 	When entering a URL, you can hold down the Period key to open a popover that provides common URL suffixes.

② When entering a URL, you can hold down the Period key to open a popover that provides common URL suffixes.

New! DuckDuckGo

DuckDuckGo is a new search engine option in iOS 8. It’s far less popular than Google, but offers vastly better privacy, along with other power-user features. By default, Safari uses Google to search the Web, but you can change this in Settings > Safari > Search Engine. For more, see my TidBITS article Search in Private with DuckDuckGo.

③ 	Safari in iOS 8 now suggests specific Web pages, alongside suggested search terms.

③ Safari in iOS 8 now suggests specific Web pages, alongside suggested search terms.

Finding the Toolbar

On the iPod touch and iPhone, if you don’t see the toolbar at the bottom of the screen, flick up from the middle of the screen to reveal it .

④ 	On smaller screens, Safari automatically hides the toolbar as you scroll. Flick down to reveal it.

④ On smaller screens, Safari automatically hides the toolbar as you scroll. Flick down to reveal it.

Wrangling Tabs

Tip: To open a link in a new tab, press and hold it, and tap Open in New Tab.

⑤ 	Tap the Pages icon to open a 3D view of all open tabs. Notice the New Tab plus + button. Tap it to open a new tab.

⑤ Tap the Pages icon to open a 3D view of all open tabs. Notice the New Tab plus + button. Tap it to open a new tab.

Reader View

Reader View makes articles easier to read by cutting out many superfluous visual elements (including most ads) and filling the screen with actual article content. If Reader View is available, a multi-line button appears to the left of the URL in the Address/Search box. Tap it to enter and exit Reader View.

New! Recently Closed Tabs

In iOS 7 on the iPad, you could press and hold the New Tab + button to see a list of recently closed tabs. In iOS 8, that functionality is also available on the iPod touch and iPhone, on the Pages screen.

Tap the Bookmarks icon to view Bookmarks, Reading List , and Shared Links:

⑥ 	Tap the eyeglasses icon to switch to Reading List view and access articles that you’ve saved to read at a later time.

⑥ Tap the eyeglasses icon to switch to Reading List view and access articles that you’ve saved to read at a later time.

Tip: Bookmarks and Reading List sync via iCloud, so you can access them from all your Apple devices.

⑦ 	To add a favorite Web site, view it in Safari, tap the Address/Search box, pull down, and tap Add to Favorites.

⑦ To add a favorite Web site, view it in Safari, tap the Address/Search box, pull down, and tap Add to Favorites.

Tip: To move a bookmark within the Favorites view, touch and hold its icon for a moment, and then drag it. You can also touch and hold an item and then tap Delete to remove it.

  1. Tap the Bookmarks icon, and then tap Shared Links.
  2. Tap Subscriptions in the lower right.
  3. To remove a feed, tap the red delete button to the left of its entry .
  4. Tap Done.
⑧ 	You can edit Shared Links to disable Twitter accounts or unsubscribe from RSS feeds.

⑧ You can edit Shared Links to disable Twitter accounts or unsubscribe from RSS feeds.

You can also hide tweets from individual accounts in this view.

More New Features

⑨ 	When available, Scan Credit Card is located just above the onscreen keyboard.

⑨ When available, Scan Credit Card is located just above the onscreen keyboard.

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“Shopping for secret presents? In iOS 8’s Safari app, tap the Pages icon (two overlapping pages) and tap Private.”

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