Owning an iPhone, Android smartphone, Mac or PC, you most likely have come across the words “Safari” and “Google” at some point in time.
Safari and Google are two of the most recognized browsing and search engine platforms on the entire internet.
So is Safari and Google the same?
Safari is a web browser that is owned and operated by Apple. Google is a search engine that is powered by Google under parent company Alphabet, and can be used within the Safari web browser. Google Chrome is also a web browser like Safari, but differs in that it is owned and operated by Google.
There are also a range of features that makes Safari and Google Chrome different from each other, as well as a few that are quite similar.
Read on below as I cover in more detail on what sets Safari and Google Chrome apart from each other, and which might be the better web browsing option for your devices.
Is Safari A Search Engine?
You might be thinking that since Google is known as the place where you search for queries on the internet that Safari has search engine capabilities too.
Actually, in turns out that Safari is just a web browser, and nothing but.
This means that you can use Safari as a platform that goes directly to websites, or to other search engines, but does not actually search for any terms on the internet by itself.
In fact, it is very common to see Apple device owners going to the Google search engine through Safari, since that is the iOS mobile and OS X desktop web browser that’s provided for Apples right out of the box.
There are also other search engines that can be accessed through the Safari web browser, including Bing, DuckDuckGo, and Yahoo!.
How To Set Default Search Engine For Safari
Depending on if you are using an iOS Apple device, such as an iPhone or iPad, or if you’re on a MacBook Air with the OS X Mac operating system, the process to set the default search engine is slightly different each way.
Here is how to set the default search engine for Safari on iPhone and iPad with iOS:
- Find the Settings app inside your Home screen, or search for it by swiping down (or to the left) and typing in ‘Settings’ the search bar up top.
- Once you are in Settings, scroll down and tap on the Safari option.
- You will then find a whole host of settings to adjust your Safari experience. Look for the Search Engine option and determine if that is the desired one you want.
- If the search engine by default isn’t the provider that you want, tap the Search Engine bar and choose from the list of available options, including Google, Yahoo, Bing, and DuckDuckGo.
- Tap to check your desired search engine and you’re all set. Safari will now default to that search engine anytime you type a query into the address bar.
If you are using OS X, the process is a little different. Here’s how to set the default search engine from Safari for Mac desktop and MacBook Pro:
- Open Safari from the Menu Bar and Click on the Safari option along the very top menu of your screen.
- From the dropdown menu, choose the Preferences option.
- Click on Search.
- You will now find the chosen default search engine next to the Search Engine label.
- If you’d like to change the default search engine, click on the Search Engine dropdown menu and choose from the list of available options, including Google, Yahoo, Bing, and DuckDuckGo.
- Click to confirm your desired search engine and you’re all set. Safari will now default to that search engine anytime you type a query into the address bar.
Tip: If your are running the same iCloud account on your iOS and OS X devices, once you choose a default search engine for Safari the option should sync across all of your devices. There’s no need to change it on both the mobile and desktop Apple operating systems, just on one or the other.
What’s The Difference Between Safari And Google Chrome?
Safari and Google Chrome are similar in that they are both web browsers that can allow you to surf the internet from your mobile and desktop devices.
Safari and Google Chrome can also access the same search engines from within them, such as Google (the search engine), Bing, Yahoo, and DuckDuckGo.
One other similarity is that Safari and Google Chrome can sync information such as favorite websites, bookmarks and history across all devices that share the same Apple iCloud or Google accounts.
Okay… I guess the iCloud and Google part makes them different, but the general concepts are the same!
But there are many differences between Safari and Google that set them apart. Here’s how:
- Support and Development: Safari is a web browser supported and developed by Apple, while Google Chrome is a web browser supported by Google under parent company Alphabet.
- Operating System Compatibility: Safari can be used natively only on Mac and iOS devices (and Android with some not-recommended emulating). Google Chrome works on Mac, iOS, Windows, Linux, Chrome OS for Chromebook, and Android. Suffice to say, Google Chrome is available on a lot more operating systems than Safari.
- Extensions: Google Chrome has more open, and therefore a lot more, extensions than Safari, therefore, having more add-on support.
- Nativeness: Safari is native on iOS and OS X devices, while Google Chrome is native on Android and Chrome OS devices.
- Sync: Chrome can sync to any device that is signed on to the same Google account, including Android, Chrome OS, Apple iOS and OS X devices. Safari, on the other hand, only sync with iOS and OS X with the same iCloud account.
- Reader View: Safari supports Reader View, an option that strips web pages of visual distraction and leaves just the words in clear, easy to read font. Chrome does not come with a Reader View.
- Customizability: Google Chrome has one of the easiest and most fun ways to change themes, buttons, and menu bars. Safari only has a Dark or Light theme.
As you peruse through the internet using each web browser, you’ll notice small differences in the feel and visuals between them as well, such as active and previous downloads appearing at the top corner Safari versus along the bottom for Chrome.
Is Chrome Better Than Safari?
Google Chrome and Safari are similar in many ways. After all, they are both primarily web browsers. But there are also tons of things that set them apart as well.
Depending on the devices that you are using, your preferences, and what developer platform you use more, will weigh heavily on this “who’s better than who” battle.
For instance, if you are a writer, business, or shopper that uses add-ons that only Google Chrome supports, then you will find yourself using that web browser much more often. If that is the case, you’ll most likely have a Google account associated with that browser which can save all of your information and sync across all devices that are on the same Google sign on.
But be sure to bring your charger with you if you prefer to use Chrome on a MacBook Pro or iPhone. The browser is known to use a significant amount of energy on Apple devices, especially when there’s multiple add-ons and tabs that are open.
That’s one area where Safari leads. If efficient and long battery life is what you are after, and you also own a ton of Apple devices around the house or business, then you will appreciate how far Safari has come to ensuring that browsing takes up as little battery juice as possible.
Safari and Apple go hand in hand like two peas in a pod. Just like how MacBooks, Mac desktops, Apple Watches, AirPods, and PowerBeats Pros work seamlessly together inside its own ecosystem. Apple makes sure that Safari runs smoothly and efficiently on iOS and OS X devices, and nothing but.
Which is most likely the reason why there isn’t wide open availability for Android, Windows, Linux, or Chrome OS.
Where Apple fortifies its moat around the Safari castle, Google’s Chrome web browser can sync information across Android, Windows, and Apple devices.
Google’s other apps like Maps, Sheets, Docs, Slides, and Gmail can all work together under the same Google account, and Chrome only makes that sync more seamless since it’s developed to handle its own applications.
Safari can also access Google applications, but are not synced across iCloud devices unless they are signed on to the same Google account. So the favor sways towards Chrome in this case.
Do you get bored of looking at the same menu bars, home screens, and buttons on your web browser all the time?
Or do you prefer a sleek, streamlined look and feel?
Depending on which you prefer will influence you towards Chrome or Safari, as Google has opened the customizing gates wide open for people to download and change tons of themes any way they want to on Chrome.
So much so that there’s even a storefront that lets you pick and choose from a host of available themes that artists have already created, which feature all different kinds of wallpapers, colors, and sounds.
Safari is more streamlined in that it only offers a Dark or Light theme, with no option to alter the colors or home screen wallpaper. However, according to Cuddy, Safari is known to provide more consistent iPhone activity in places like medical work environments.
There are tons of advantages and disadvantages to using Safari or Google Chrome, and it’s heavily based on a users preferences, current devices, and home and business needs.
How Do I Switch From Safari To Chrome On The iPhone and Mac?
At the time of this post, Apple currently does not have an option to choose Google Chrome as the default web browser on any of its devices.
However, if you want to try and switch over to the Google ecosystem with its Chrome web browser, there is a way that makes the process easier:
- First, be sure to download the Google Chrome app here from the App Store so that you can access the web browser from an iPhone or iPad.
- Next, if you have a Mac device like the new MacBook or Mac desktop, you can download the Chrome application from their website here.
- With the apps downloaded on all of your devices, open and sign on to each using a new or existing Google account.
- Now that the same Google account is used across all of your Mac and iOS devices, you can now sync Chrome’s information.
- Bonus: Sign in to your other Google apps, such as Maps and Docs, with the same Google account so that syncing across devices becomes even more seamless.
With Google Chrome downloaded and installed, you will have to manually open the application each time you wish to browse the internet, since Apple doesn’t have the option to make Chrome the default browser.
But even if a link pops up on another browser, you can copy and paste it to Chrome and continue surfing on it as the preferred browser.
What Other Browsers Can I Use Instead Of Safari?
There really is no shortage of browsers to choose from as an alternative to Safari.
There are two other somewhat popular options that Mac and iOS users browse on instead of Safari, which are Mozilla Firefox and Opera from Opera Software.
These two platforms are known to be upgraded on a continuous basis and are updated all the time by each developer so that their benchmark performances achieve better and better results.
Microsoft also has their own web browser, called Edge. But it’s not supported for use on iOS devices. Edge integrates seamlessly with Microsoft’s apps such as Office 365 and Outlook, as well as Xbox accounts, all powered by the Azure cloud.
However, since development and support is favored towards Microsoft devices, its best use is on the Windows platform.
Recommended Products Mentioned In This Article:
- MacBook Air (Discover it here on Amazon) – A sleek yet powerful lightweight laptop that can run multiple tabs on Safari with true efficiency. Say hello to all-day battery life.
- Safari Web Browser (By Apple) – Surf the web with privacy on the web browser that’s built for the Mac with more speed and efficiency than others. Integrate with iCloud to stream with all your Apple devices.
- Google Chrome Web Browser (By Google) – Harness the power of search from Google and save across all your devices, faster than ever before.