Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Advertisement

Safari is probably the best browser for Mac users Mac & iOS Users: Why Aren't You Using Safari Yet? Mac & iOS Users: Why Aren't You Using Safari Yet? Apple's browser is now a polished first-party product that's exclusive to Mac and iOS devices. So why aren't you using it? Read More . It’s highly optimized, energy efficient, plays nicely with other Apple computers and mobile devices. But because of its smaller user base, it doesn’t have the lion’s share of extensions.

Despite this there are some very useful extensions that add all sorts of additional customization options and functionality to Apple’s browser. Here are our favorites, but don’t forget to let us know what we missed in the comments at the end of the article.

A Quick Word About Extensions

Keep one thing in mind before you install an extension for Safari: the more extensions you have installed, the bigger the drain on your system. Safari is built as a fast and lightweight browser. By adding more features and options, performance can suffer.

So, it’s worth thinking twice about how useful an extension is to you before you install it. If you find yourself not using an extension that often How to Clean Up Your Browser Extensions (The Easy Way) How to Clean Up Your Browser Extensions (The Easy Way) If you regularly check out cool extensions, then it is probably time to clean up those add-ons that you no longer want, like, or need. Here's how to do it easily. Read More , disable it from Safari > Preferences > Extensions by un-checking the relevant box. If you want to remove an extension completely, click the Uninstall button or delete the relevant application associated with the extension.

Remember: Extensions can read, modify, and transmit content from all webpages. That includes potentially sensitive information, so think twice before blindly trusting every browser add-on you come across.

Tab Options

Sick of not having enough control over browser tabs? Tab Options is the extension for you. It allows you to enable additional options for tabs, and even assign hotkeys to perform certain tab-related actions. Of note is the ability to specify which tab is focused when closing another tab.

If lack of tab customization is holding you back from using Safari full-time, Tab Options is the answer.

See also: Link Thing from the same developer, which contains many similar options and link-specific tweaks too.

Safari Keyword Search

Search more efficiently with the Safari Keyword Search plugin. This handy extension enables you to search specific websites by prefixing a short phrase or letter before your query. As an example, “e iphone” would search eBay, “a PS4” would search Amazon, and “imdb Xtro” would search IMDb.

Best of all is the ability to add your own search engines. I added one for MakeUseOf so I can now search the site simply by typing the letter “m” followed by my query. The plugin overrides your default search engine, so make sure you set that up correctly after installing.

Pickpocket

A simple bookmarks manager for those of you who use Pocket, Delicious, Kippt, and Google Bookmarks. The extension places a button in your toolbar, which allows you to access links you’ve saved for later in a few clicks. You can also add new bookmarks to these services directly from Safari.

See also: Cloudmarks is another similar extension from the same developer which supports Pinboard, Delicious, and Kippt.

PiPifier

Love macOS Sierra’s new picture-in-picture mode What's New in macOS Sierra? The New Features Coming to Your Mac What's New in macOS Sierra? The New Features Coming to Your Mac OS X is dead, long live macOS. Read More ? PiPifier is a Safari extension which enables the feature for any HTML5 video. Download it from the App Store, install, and you’ll find a toolbar button appear alongside your address bar. You’ll also find a new picture-in-picture button directly on the video controls.

I had a little trouble getting this working to start with, but a Safari restart cleared up many of the problems. It works well for YouTube and Vimeo, but I can’t get it working for streaming service Twitch (possibly because Twitch relies on Flash for adverts). There are a few paid variations of this extension, but this is the only one you need.

ClickToPlugin

If you hate web plugins, crush them with ClickToPlugin. The app is now on its last version thanks to some changes Apple has made to the way extensions are implemented. That means it’s probably on its way out, but it works well enough for now.

The extension basically disables plugins until you click on them. I found that recently some websites (like YouTube) were defaulting to Flash versions because of this plugin, presumably because Flash is the fallback option when HTML5 fails. It’s customizable so you might want to give it a shot if you’re sick of auto-playing videos and noisy adverts.

HoverSee

Formerly known as HoverZoom, this extension takes the effort out of clicking links in favor of just hovering your mouse over them instead. It’s arguably most useful for images, allowing you to just hold your mouse over an image link to load a large preview without leaving the page.

It also works for videos and has experimental support for webpage previews too. Don’t forget that Safari has a three-finger tap gesture that also performs a similar task Improve Your Safari Experience with These 10 Tips Improve Your Safari Experience with These 10 Tips Don’t you wish you could fix a few Safari quirks here, speed up a few things there? A good mix of in-built features and extensions is all it takes. Read More .

Tampermonkey

Tampermonkey is a popular userscript manager available for all major browsers. It adds support for custom scripts that change the way you see and interact with the web. First you need to install the extension, then simply grab some scripts from a repository.

Scripts are often used to remove objects from web pages, change CSS and alter appearance, insert links and shortcuts. Some examples include cleaning up Facebook (below) and adding torrent download links to IMDb pages. Be careful as some scripts are designed to hijack your accounts.

Download scripts: GreasyFork, OpenUserJS, and a mirror of the now-defunct Userscripts.org (careful with that last one, it’s unmoderated and full of dodgy scripts).

F.B. Purity

There’s a version of this extension available for all major browsers, including Firefox, Chrome, Edge, and Opera. It’s designed to clean up Facebook 15 Extensions to Transform Your Facebook Experience 15 Extensions to Transform Your Facebook Experience From finding out who unfriended you to keeping to removing those annoying boxes in the sidebar, here are the 15 best extensions for a better Facebook. Read More  as the name suggests. Hide things like suggested posts, related posts, sponsored posts, game suggestions, trending topics, and more.

The tweak also disables autoplay videos, and you can even customize the Facebook experience with your own CSS if you want. Just remember that if Facebook makes any major changes and things aren’t quite working as they should, you should first disable an extension like this to see if things get better.

Note: You’ll need Tampermonkey (above) to use F.B. Purity on Safari.

Translate

As you can probably guess, Translate is an app for translating webpages on the fly. It adds a single toolbar button to Safari which reloads the current page within a Google Translate wrapper. The extension automatically detects which language the page is currently in.

Unlike Chrome, Safari doesn’t have native translation built into it. This extension helps close the gap.

Syndicate

Find every RSS feed on a website simply by clicking the Syndicate toolbar button. The extension isn’t a fully-fledged RSS reader Replace Reader: 3 Best Desktops RSS Clients for Mac OS X Replace Reader: 3 Best Desktops RSS Clients for Mac OS X Bring your RSS feeds back to the Mac. Here are the best programs for the job. Read More , and instead allows you to copy the feed or add it to Safari’s Shared Links feature.

You can access Safari’s feeds by clicking the Sidebar button followed by the @ symbol.

NoMoreiTunes

Hate it when iTunes suddenly launches because you clicked on an App Store link? Install NoMoreiTunes and never deal with it again! Whether you’re looking for iOS or Mac apps, NoMoreiTunes ensures you’ll remain in the web preview.

Better still you can cut Apple’s store out of the equation entirely using an App Store search engine designed specifically for web-friendliness Browse & Search All Parts Of The iTunes Store Quickly With Fnd.io Browse & Search All Parts Of The iTunes Store Quickly With Fnd.io The bane of being an Apple user, whether on Mac or iOS, is that there is no good way to browse or search iTunes online. But Fnd.io wants to change all that. Read More .

Sessions

One of my only major complaints about Safari is the lack of multiple user sessions as found in Chrome. It’s hard to keep things separate, whether it’s work, personal writing, or those disordered time-wasting browsing sessions. An extension called Sessions doesn’t fix the problem entirely, but it makes organizing your tabs a little easier.

Hit the Sessions button in the toolbar to save whole sets of tabs as separate sessions, and restore others at any time. Simple. Unfortunately, Sessions is on its last version. It still works now but a future Safari update is bound to break it at some point.

WasteNoTime

If you’re a serial procrastinator How Procrastination Changed the World How Procrastination Changed the World We often think of procrastination as an unnecessary hindrance to our everyday lives. But if it weren't for procrastination, the world would be an entirely different place. Read More and lack self-control, it might help you to know where your time is going. WasteNoTime monitors how long you spend on specific websites, and helps you better manage your productive time by creating a block list.

The idea here is that you’ll stop spending all day on Facebook and get some work done, but you’ll need to supply enough willpower not just turn the extension off too.

Shut Up

You should know by now to never read online comment sections (except those on MakeUseOf, of course). If this sound advice isn’t enough and you find yourself sucked in by toxic baiting, logical fallacies, and adverts for dating websites then Shut Up is what you need.

This extension hides comments by default for most major websites, and allows you to enable them simply by clicking the Shut Up button in your toolbar. The extension works by stripping out relevant CSS, and even remembers your choice for each website you visit.

Service-Specific Extensions

Many web services have their own browser extensions, and these aren’t just limited to the likes of Chrome and Firefox. If you use any of the following, you may be able to make life easier with the aid of additional functionality right in your browser.

What Did We Miss?

This is a comprehensive list of Safari extensions, but we’re bound to have missed something. Leave a comment below with your favorite Safari extensions, and we might even add it to the list.

What Safari extensions can’t you live without?

Image Credit: tomertu via Shutterstock.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Partha
    May 16, 2017 at 8:46 am

    Following extension would be of great use :

    1. proxy switch
    2. video downloader
    3. rapportive

  2. ron
    May 11, 2017 at 7:47 am

    what about an important thing like clean & forget for Safari. Any suggestions?

  3. Rebecca
    February 4, 2017 at 6:56 pm

    I love Ghostery, Adblock Plus, and Web of Trust.

  4. SkankinPenguin
    February 1, 2017 at 1:39 am

    I definitely would add Highly (highly.co), Bloom (getbloom.de), SimilarSites, Ghostery, and Raindrop.io to your list. ;)

  5. Keith
    January 30, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    A few more Safari extensions that i find useful:

    Cleaner for Facebook (instead of F.B. Purity)
    Disconnect (blocks tracking cookies)

    I hate the way Safari displays in the dropdown list when I add a bookmark. I like how Firefox displays them, with expanding folders. Does anyone know of a way to get this feature in Safari? It would probably require a SIMBL plug-in, but I haven't found one.

  6. Will James
    January 30, 2017 at 3:54 pm

    I've mostly switched to Safari, but I really miss mouse gestures from Firefox. The ability to open or close a tab in one gesture is great.

    • brijazz
      February 7, 2017 at 2:52 am

      Take a look at Better Touch Tool. It's not a Safari extension, but rather a full app that allows you to define custom gestures (either globally or per-app).

      • Tim Brookes
        February 17, 2017 at 2:59 am

        Can confirm, BetterTouchTool is great and allows you to do things like open new tabs with custom gestures, taps, clicks etc using a variety of different input devices.

        Get it from https://www.boastr.net

  7. MV
    January 30, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    Great stuff, thank you Tim!