Everything New in Safari in iOS 16: Shared Tab Groups, Extension Syncing, Web Push Notifications and More

The iOS 16 Safari update builds on the Tab Groups feature introduced in ‌iOS 16‌, plus it adds some much-needed quality of life improvements and security enhancements.

iOS 16 Safari Guide Feature
This guide covers all of the new features in Safari in ‌iOS 16‌ and iPadOS 16.

Tab Group Updates

Introduced in iOS 15, Tab Groups let you organize and save your tabs into different segments that you can swap between. So, for example, if you're planning a trip, you can save all your tabs into a "Trip" group. In ‌iOS 16‌, Apple takes Tab Groups even further with new features.

Pinned Tabs

Pinned tabs are now available in ‌iOS 16‌ and ‌iPadOS 16‌, and they can be used in Tab Groups. If you have tabs in your Tab Group that you want to have open all the time, pinning is an option. To pin a tab to a Tab Group in ‌iOS 16‌, open up the Tab Group then long press on the URL bar in Safari and choose the "Pin Tab" option.

pin tab ios 16 tab groups

Tab Group Start Pages

Every Tab Group has its own separate Start Page in ‌iOS 16‌, so you can have different favorites, frequently visited sites, and other options that are exclusive to each group of tabs.

ios 16 tab group start page
Accessing the start page can be done by going to the Tab View and then pressing the "+" button to open an empty page. If you scroll down to the bottom, you can tap on "Edit" to customize your Tab Group start page. You'll need to have the Tab Group you want to customize active, as this is a process that needs to be done separately for each Tab Group.

Shared Tab Groups

Any Tab Group you've created can now be shared with friends and family, allowing multiple people to contribute links and work together. Everyone can add tabs and see the Tab Group update instantly.

ios 16 shared tab groups
A Tab Group can be shared by tapping on the share sheet icon at the top of the Tab View and then selecting a person to share with. You can send an invite using Messages, and then see who's participating in the Tab Group interface.

Passkeys

Passkeys are meant to replace traditional passwords when signing into websites or apps, and Apple is aiming to roll out Passkeys starting in ‌iOS 16‌, ‌iPadOS 16‌, and macOS Ventura.

Passkey Feature Orange 1
Passkeys are next-generation credentials that are safer and easier to use than passwords, using a dual authentication key system. One key is public and stored on the website server, while the second key is private and kept on-device. On the iPhone and other devices with biometric authentication, Face ID or Touch ID is used to authorize the passkey to authenticate the user to the website. The keys must match to allow for a log-in, and because the second key is private and available only to the user, it cannot be stolen, leaked, or phished.

Passkeys rely on iCloud Keychain, which in turn requires two-factor authentication for further protection. Passkeys sync across all of a user's devices through ‌iCloud‌ Keychain, which is end-to-end encrypted with its own cryptographic keys.

Passkeys will work on all Apple devices, but Apple is also working with companies like Microsoft and Google to ensure that Passkeys can also be used with non-Apple devices.

Extension Syncing

If you've downloaded an extension on another device, you can see it in the Safari preferences on your ‌iPhone‌ thanks to Extensions syncing, a new ‌iOS 16‌ feature.

ios 16 extensions syncing
After it's installed, the extension will sync across devices so you only need to turn it on once. Extensions are listed in the Settings app under Safari > Extensions. Extensions not on your device are listed in the "On Other Devices" section so you can easily download them.

If you don't want to share extensions across devices, you can toggle off the option in the same Settings section.

Web Push Notifications

Website push notifications have been available through Safari on the Mac for some time now, but in ‌iOS 16‌, these push notifications are also going to be available on the ‌iPhone‌ and iPad.

Support for web push notifications won't be available when ‌iOS 16‌ launches, with the feature coming in an update later this year.

As on the Mac, web notifications will be available on an opt-in basis, and you will be able to choose websites to receive notifications for.

Website Settings Sync

Your website settings like page zoom, automatic Reader view, and more, will now sync across devices so you only need to set your preferences once. If you don't want to share settings for websites across devices, you can toggle it off in the Safari section of the Settings app.

safari share across devices ios 16

Strong Password Editing

When you're creating a website account using Safari, Safari will suggest a strong password for you to use, which syncs with ‌iCloud‌ Keychain. Unfortunately, some websites have specific requirements like a certain number of symbols or capital letters that strong passwords don't always fulfill.

safari edit strong password
With ‌iOS 16‌, there is an option to edit strong passwords so you can adjust them as needed to meet site requirements.

Focus Filters

Apple in ‌iOS 16‌ added a new Focus option called Filters. Filters are designed to allow users to filter out content within apps, displaying a specific Safari Tab Group or Mail account. When you use a Focus with a filter set, the app with the filter will only show what you've selected, hiding everything else.

ios 16 focus filters 1
For Safari, you can choose any Tab Group account to associate with a Focus. With a filter set, when you're in that Focus, Safari will only show the Tab Group you've selected.

Lift Subject From Background

‌iOS 16‌ has a fun feature that lets you drag subjects right out of images, and it works in the Safari app. Open up a webpage with any image, long press on the image, and then choose the "Copy Subject" option.

safari isolate subject ios 16
Your ‌iPhone‌ will automatically copy the main subject of the image and then you can paste it elsewhere, into the Messages app, for example.

Guide Feedback

Have questions about Safari in ‌iOS 16‌, know of a feature we left out, or want to offer feedback on this guide? Send us an email here.

Related Roundups: iOS 16, iPadOS 16

Top Rated Comments

hagar Avatar
2 weeks ago
These levels of customisation by Apple were unthinkable a few years back. But I’m not sure it’s the direction Apple should be going.

Tab groups and especially Focus are very complex to grasp for the majority of people. The end user needs to configure everything manually while “Siri Smarts” aren’t doing anything. It’s like Apple gave up and said: let the user figure it out.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rodedwards Avatar
2 weeks ago
Safari should lead the way in Apple web browsers - but it just doesn't. It also seems to manage memory badly too - which is a pain in the @ss for developing apps. Chrome and Firefox just seem to work better.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ChristianSelig Avatar
2 weeks ago
That cat is cute
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Populus Avatar
2 weeks ago

Lipstick on a pig
Honestly I find most of this features really useful, especially for those who use Safari browser across all their devices.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nvmls Avatar
2 weeks ago
Lipstick on a pig
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LV426 Avatar
2 weeks ago

Does the new iCloud Password Editing feature allow you to change easily the already set passwords? Because many times we need to change the password and using iCloud Keychain used to be a bit difficult or clunky (or I’m doing it wrong).

Also I’m really wishing passkeys are broadly implemented soon.
Safari > Preferences > Passwords > Select site > Edit
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

new safari design options ios 15

iOS 15 Safari Guide: Tabs, Extensions, Search Bar, and Other Changes

Friday September 3, 2021 2:10 pm PDT by
Apple's Safari app has undergone a number of changes during the iOS 15 beta testing process. Apple started out with a radical new design that moved the address bar from the top of the app's interface and introduced a floating tab bar, but after a multitude of complaints, there were several redesigns that culminated in an option to undo the iOS 15 design entirely. Subscribe to the MacRumors ...
iOS 15

iOS 15.6 Features: Everything New in iOS 15.6

Wednesday July 20, 2022 1:15 pm PDT by
Apple today released iOS 15.6 and iPadOS 15.6 to the public after two months of beta testing. As these will be some of the final updates to iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, there are a limited number of new features and bug fixes. We've outlined everything that's new in iOS 15.6 below. Live Sports Updates With iOS 15.6 and iPadOS 15.6, the TV app now supports restarting, pausing, rewinding, and...
iOS 16 Focus Feature

iOS 16 Focus Guide: What's New With Apple's Focus Mode

Friday July 1, 2022 2:17 pm PDT by
Apple in iOS 15 introduced Focus mode, an expansion of Do Not Disturb that allows you to set up different permissions for apps, contacts, and more depending on what you're doing. You can have separate tasks for when you're at work, when you're studying, when you're at home, and more. In iOS 16, coming as a public beta in July and a full release likely in September, Apple has improved Focus...
iOS 15 Top Features

iOS 15 Features: Our Top 10 Picks

Monday September 20, 2021 1:11 pm PDT by
iOS 15 is absolutely packed with new features, and it can be overwhelming sorting through everything that's new. If you're wondering whether it's worth upgrading and what new features might be worth getting access to right away, we've rounded up 10 of the best new additions in the iOS 15 update that you might not be aware of. 1. Android and Web-Based FaceTime For the first time, FaceTime is ...
ios 15 notification summary

Just Install iOS 15? Here's Where to Start

Monday September 20, 2021 11:50 am PDT by
Apple today released the new iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 updates to all users, and there are dozens of new features to learn about. Some of these options must be toggled on or set up, so we've created a handy get started with iOS 15 guide that walks you through what you should do after installing the update. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Set Up Notification Summary If...
iOS 16 Mail Guide Feature

iOS 16 Mail App: Improved Search, Undo Send, Scheduled Send, Reminders and More

Friday July 8, 2022 1:08 pm PDT by
With iOS 16 and iPadOS 16, Apple has added a number of improvements to the Mail app to bring it in line with competing email apps. The Mail app includes search updates, an undo send option, and tools for getting reminders about emails that you need to follow up on, plus more. This guide covers everything that you need to know about the Mail app in iOS 16, with these features set to be...
iOS 16 Messages Guide Feature

iOS 16 Messages Guide: Undo Send, Edit, and Other New Features

Wednesday June 29, 2022 2:21 pm PDT by
With iOS 16, coming as a public beta in July and a full release likely in September, Apple is adding some major updates to the Messages app, introducing features that many people have been wanting for years. This guide highlights everything that's new with the Messages app in iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and also, macOS Ventura as many Messages features are cross-platform. iMessage Editing When you...
safari copy links

iOS 15 Features, Tips, and Tricks You Probably Don't Know

Wednesday October 6, 2021 11:16 am PDT by
With the release of iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 on September 20, Apple introduced millions of users to several of its new tentpole features for iPhone and iPad, such as Focus Mode, Notification Summary, a redesigned Safari, and more. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. But beyond the headline features, Apple has also made numerous tweaks and changes to its mobile operating...

Popular Stories

apple watch series 7 mystery

Gurman: Apple Watch 'Pro' to Offer First True Redesign Since Series 4, but No Flat Sides

Sunday July 24, 2022 6:13 am PDT by
The upcoming high-end variant of the Apple Watch Series 8 will feature the device's first redesign in years and a new titanium casing, but will not feature the long-rumored squared-off look, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In the latest edition of his "Power On" newsletter, Gurman said that this year's high-end Apple Watch model will be "a good bit bigger" than the current Apple Watch...
airtag battery icon

Apple Removes AirTag Battery Level Indicator From the Find My App

Thursday July 21, 2022 5:15 am PDT by
In iOS 15.6 and the latest iOS 16 beta, Apple appears to have intentionally removed the AirTag battery indicator in the Find My app. In previous versions of iOS, a small battery icon, similar to the iPhone battery status, appears below an AirTag's name and location when the AirTag card is opened in Find My. While not accompanied by a percentage, the icon provided an approximate...
Full HomePod Black

Three Discontinued Apple Products Rumored to Make a Comeback

Thursday July 21, 2022 12:47 pm PDT by
While the full-size HomePod, 12-inch MacBook, and iMac Pro have all been discontinued, rumors suggest all three products could return in the future. Keep reading for a recap of everything that we have heard so far about potential comebacks for these products and new features and changes to expect. HomePod Apple discontinued the full-size HomePod in March 2021, with the company deciding...
iPhone 14 Pro Lineup Feature Purple

Apple Continues to Diversify Suppliers Ahead of iPhone 14 Launch

Friday July 22, 2022 3:04 am PDT by
Apple has added to its list of suppliers for the iPhone 14 series in a bid to avoid potential supply chain shortages when mass production of the devices begins, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a series of tweets, Kuo said components from SG Micro have passed quality certification for the high-end iPhone 14 models, meaning the Chinese company has been greenlighted to supply components...
iPhone XS vs iPhone 14 Pro Feature

iPhone XS vs. iPhone 14 Pro: New Features to Expect if You've Waited to Upgrade

Thursday July 21, 2022 9:15 am PDT by
If you've been holding on to your iPhone XS and are considering upgrading to the iPhone 14 Pro when it launches later this year, check out our list below for a recap of the many new features and changes to expect. The list includes major new features added since the iPhone 11 Pro, as well as rumored features for the iPhone 14 Pro. Have another iPhone model? Check out our iPhone X vs. 14 Pro, ...
maxresdefault

Video Comparison: M1 MacBook Air vs. M2 MacBook Air

Friday July 22, 2022 1:08 pm PDT by
Apple last week launched a redesigned version of the MacBook Air that's equipped with a next-generation M2 chip. If you own the original M1 MacBook Air and have been thinking about upgrading, or if you're simply new to the MacBook Air and are trying to choose between the two machines, we've done a hands-on comparison video pitting the M2 MacBook Air against the prior-generation M1 MacBook Air. ...