Ditch Google for another search engine inside Safari [Pro tip]


Change default search engine in Safari
Bing, DuckDuckGo, and others are available.
Image: Cult of Mac

Safari pro tips bug We want to help you master Safari. Cult of Mac’s Safari Pro Tips series will show you how to make the most of Apple’s web browser on iOS and Mac.

Google has long been the default search engine inside Safari, but it’s not your only option. With a simple settings change, you can find what you’re looking for with Yahoo, Bing, DuckDuckGo or Ecosia instead.

Find out how in this Safari pro tip.

Google certainly does the job for most Safari users. It became one of the first search engines in the early days of the internet, and it’s only gotten better. But there are reasons why you might want to consider a different option.

DuckDuckGo does a better job of protecting your privacy. Bing is great for those who use Windows instead of macOS on their desktop. Ecosia is environmentally friendly and plants trees when you search.

To make one of these your default on iPhone, iPad or Mac, all you need is a quick settings change.

How to change your default search engine in Safari

Simply follow the steps below.

On iPhone and iPad

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Safari.
  3. Tap Search Engine.
  4. Select one of the four alternatives to Google: Yahoo, Bing, DuckDuckGo or Ecosia.

On macOS

  1. Open Safari.
  2. In the menu bar, click Safari then click Preferences.
  3. Under Search, open the drop-down box alongside Search engine.
  4. Select one of the four alternatives to Google.

It’s as simple as that. The next time you perform a search inside the address bar, your new search engine of choice will be used.

Sadly, there is no way to use a search engine that isn’t “approved” by Apple as a default. So, if your search engine of choice isn’t available, you’ll need to enter its URL manually and then perform your search from there.