You can gain many useful features to make web browsing easier by installing the Safari browser extensions we’ve presented. These small programs greatly enhance the functionality of Apple’s web browser.
Safari is the default macOS browser.
Safari is the default web browser built into macOS. It was first released in early 2003. According to StatCounter, as of November 2018, it ranked as the second most traffic-generating browser with over 15% share. Safari is an integral part of the system and can be found on any modern Mac with OS X or macOS installed. The browser is very well integrated into the system’s features. It’s possible to pay for purchases with Apple Pay, remember passwords in iCloud, and even pass an open web page from our iPhone to our Mac (and vice versa) using Continuity. Unlike with Windows, most Cupertino users use the default browser. It has several advantages over replacements. Among them is the much longer battery life of Mac laptops when using Safari. Like Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Mozilla Firefox, Safari is customisable with extensions.
What do extensions do?
Browser extensions add special features that make your daily browsing experience easier. They also allow you to customise the look and feel of your browser. You can display social media buttons, block ads and content on web pages, quickly translate web pages, and even access features from other system applications.
How do I download Safari Extensions?
With the Safari 12 update for macOS Mojave and iOS 12, Apple has changed the way extensions work in the browser. In the past, you could download extensions directly from developers. Today, to install a Safari extension, it must be approved by Apple and published to the Mac App Store or Safari Extensions Gallery. Whether you use the latest macOS or not, you can install extensions from these two sources, plus extensions installed from the App Store or Extensions Gallery will update automatically. At the end of 2018, Apple stopped accepting new extensions for Extensions Gallery in order to speed up the migration to the App Store.
Here are the best free extensions for the Safari browser:
The Ghostery Lite extension is a free version of Ghostery and allows you to block ads and trackers that transmit and receive information from users browsing the web. The extension rejects content, cookies and any tracking scripts to reduce the amount of data shared by Safari with other websites.
Ghostery allows you to customise the operation of the extension from a button on the toolbar. You can select the default or custom settings. You can specify which sites you want to block ads on or which sites you want to show ads on. You can also manage audio and video playback.
Translate is an extension that is particularly useful when you come across multilingual content on the web. This extension allows you to translate from any language to another language using Microsoft’s or Google’s translators without having to open them in another tab and translate manually.
Sometimes it happens that a web site has a font that is too small (or too large). We can easily fix such problems with the Zoom extension, which lets you adjust the scaling of content on any web page.
To use the extension, simply call the application from the toolbar. Then we will get a slider with a range from 0 to 400 per cent, thanks to which we can easily adjust the size of the content. We can adjust the size of the slider by sliding it or by using the plus and minus buttons. The default button immediately returns the page to the default scaling of 100 per cent.
The web these days is highly evolved and tracks users in many different ways for both commercial and less pleasant purposes – such as account takeover. TrafficLight for Safari is an extension from Bitdefender, the manufacturer of the popular antivirus program of the same name. TrafficLight is an advanced filter protecting web users from phishing attacks. It finds hidden devices that track and analyse browsing activity and warns the user against them. It also has features to warn against unsafe web sites.
HoverSee is an extension that makes it easier to view images on the web. Some websites have scaling that causes problems displaying the images that are on them. That’s when HoverSee comes to the rescue, which zooms in on all the images and video links on a site and displays their descriptions when you hover over them. It works very well for thumbnails from Facebook or Twitter. In the case of a link to a YouTube video, it can play it. In the extension’s settings, you can adjust the display delay, as well as the minimum and maximum zoom.
Even if you are not yet using DuckDuckGo as your default search engine you can still benefit from the privacy and security features of your searches with the DuckDuckGo extension for the Safari browser. It offers search functionality without saving your history or tracking you across the internet. Just press the icon on the toolbar to get the search box.
Shortly is a small extension for the Safari browser that can easily shorten a URL. You can choose your preferred service from Google (default), Bitly, TinyURL or Custom Endpoint. Shortening addresses is especially useful when uploading them or publishing them on social media. Using the extension is very simple. Just run it from the toolbar of the site whose address you want to shorten or paste the address of the site you want to shorten. The result will be a shortened link using the service of your choice.
1Password is one of the most popular password managers. macOS has its own password manager integrated with your iCloud account, but it only works on Apple hardware. If you have an Android smartphone or a Windows PC in addition to your Mac, then you definitely need another password manager. 1Password is an ideal candidate.
The 1Password extension for the Safari browser is basically a mini version of a standalone app for macOS. This solution allows us to quickly access our passwords and logins. The extension automatically detects the page you are browsing and suggests a saved password, which speeds up the login process. 1Password manager has of course the ability to create unique and secure passwords.
To work you need a 1Password subscription, which costs a few dollars per month. You get a 30-day trial for free.
Few people know that the Safari browser doesn’t support all the popular programming languages and mechanisms used to build websites. Sometimes it happens that some websites don’t load or are displayed incorrectly. StopTheMadness extension helps you avoid such situations. This small program will make sure that your browser opens all websites correctly.
StopTheMadness extension will allow you to open context menus, copy, select and paste text and use smooth scrolling. All of these functions are available even if the site creator has blocked them.
Turn Off the Lights
Turn Off the Lights is an extension that will appeal to internet users who often watch video content. This small plug-in allows you to darken the UI elements next to the video window.
When you press the button with the light bulb symbol, the extension turns off all UI elements except the video player. It works on YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Twitch and Facebook.