At the iOS 15 presentation at WWDC 2021 in July of this year, Apple unveiled an updated Safari. In Cupertino, only one element of the browser was fundamentally changed – the address bar – but how. They took it and moved it to the bottom of the screen, where, according to the designers, it will belong, because it should be more convenient for smartphone users to interact with the URL. However, not everyone appreciated the innovation and wanted to return everything as it was. Well, no problem with that.
In iOS 15, the address bar in Safari is shifted down by default, but it can be returned to the top.
Despite the fact that Apple initially presented the downward shift of the address bar as an unconditional innovation without a chance to go back, during the beta testing it became clear that this was not the best idea. Most of the users, oddly enough, wanted the URL input line to return to the place where it always was, because the unexpected transfer just broke their brain. Even I, having tried to use a new browser, for a long time could not figure out where to click, and was looking for where to enter the name of the site. It’s good that in the end Cupertino decided to let users choose on their own .
How to get the Safari address bar back to the top
- Go to “Preferences” and open Safari;
- Scroll down the list of available settings;
In the settings, you can independently choose the location of the address bar
- In the Tabs section, enable Single Tab;
- Open the Safari browser and check the changes.
After this action, the address bar should return to the top in the same way as it was in iOS 14 and all previous versions of the operating system. This should be more convenient, because we are more used to entering the URL at the top, and not at the bottom – even on desktop devices, even on mobile devices. For us, this is a standard that can no longer be abandoned, despite the conventions in the form of large screens of modern smartphones and the natural position of the fingers in the lower part.
I can explain why this happens. The thing is that we rarely interact with the address bar. In any case, less often than we follow the links or use the forward-backward buttons. Therefore, moving the URL bar downward is almost pointless. This will not add convenience, but the physics of interaction with the application will change quite seriously, because the gestures we are used to have been developed for years, and now Apple has decided to distort them overnight.
Address bar in Google Chrome
Google has already tried a similar experiment by moving the address bar to the bottom of Chrome. That update even got its name – Chrome Duet . The developers of the search giant have placed a URL bar at the bottom, and a button with tabs and settings at the top. However, it quickly became clear that users did not like the new design, and they wanted to do it in such a way as to bring the address bar back to the very top.
Google Chrome used to be like this
This design of the Google Chrome interface for Android turned out to be popular among IT specialists, who rated it very highly. However, ordinary users said the redesign was disorienting to them. As a result, I began to become more and more convinced that the launch of Chrome Home will not receive approval from the majority of our users. Therefore, I spoke in favor of freezing the project, which required a lot of effort, – said one of the Google developers.
After that failure, Google had to close the Chrome Duet project and redesign the browser interface again, moving the address bar back to the top. At the bottom there are only buttons for switching between tabs. But this combination of controls turned out to be more acceptable, because users switch between open sites more often than open new ones. It would be interesting if Apple did something similar, unlinking the tab scrolling block from the address bar.