Anyone familiar with Google Chrome knows the value that extensions can bring. For years extensions have improved the browsing experience by adding new features not available by default. While Safari has lagged behind its Chromium competition, it took a giant leap forward in 2018 with Safari 12.
Now available mostly through the macOS App Store, these are the best extensions for Safari you can download in 2020.
1. DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials
Designed to run on the rather restrictive Safari 13 and later, DuckDuckGo (the same company who gave us the excellent privacy-focused search engine) has released a package that will cut down on how often you are tracked online.
It does this by blocking hidden third-party trackers, which in turn stops your browsing data from falling into the hands of companies you never expressly permitted to have that data.
Another nice feature is that the sites you visit are rated based on how much they protect your privacy. So if you go on a site with an F-rating, it’s in your hands as to whether you want to stick around or not.
2. Honey for Safari
Who can say no to saving money? Online coupon aggregator Honey can find and apply the best coupons to use at hundreds of online stores. Amazon, eBay, Best Buy, Macy’s, Bloomingdales and many more all work nicely with Honey. Just tap the name of one of the 30,000 available retailers to see which coupons are available as well as the last time they worked for other Honey users. With more than 10 million users, Honey is no overnight sensation, as the company claims its users have saved well over one billion dollars.
Once installed, this extension enables you to place a video in the corner of your screen so that you can continue working while it plays to the side. Available for Apple TV+, Disney+, Netflix, YouTube, Prime Video, Twitch and more, this must-have extension is free. Want to watch in silence? There is support for closed captioning while you are in the picture-in-picture mode.
4. Turn Off the Lights
Another popular Safari extension related to video, Turn Off the Lights, is a great extension for watching videos without distraction. Whereas PiPer helps you multitask, Turn Off the Lights encourages you to focus on just the video by disabling any distracting elements around the video screen. Essentially, everything but the video fades to dark, putting the focus entirely on what you are watching. Just click the lightbulb icon that appears in Safari, and everything but the video dims. Click it one more time, and everything will return to normal. YouTube, Twitch, Facebook Video and DailyMotion are just a few of the compatible sites.
5. Tab Suspender for Safari
Anyone who lives in a web browser all day long has at one point or another thought about memory management. Google Chrome has long been plagued as a RAM hog on the Mac, while Safari is generally seen as taking up less resources.
However, Safari has websites that take up plenty of memory, so Tab Suspender for Safari can take care of that situation. Putting Safari tabs to sleep, Tab Suspender enables users to focus on the tabs they want while others live in the background. As suspended tabs sleep, they no longer take up precious resources or drag down battery life. For anyone using a Mac with limited RAM, this extension could be a lifesaver.
6. 1Blocker for Safari
Say goodbye to obtrusive ads, hidden trackers and other annoying aspects of the Web with 1Blocker for Safari. Upon installation, flip a couple of switches, and you can experience the Web anew. Fully native to Safari, 1Blocker does not drain resources or take up precious battery life while running in the background. This extension is so powerful, the developer claims it can load websites on average two to five times faster than sites running without it. One of the most popular ad blockers on iOS, 1Blocker should be one of the first Safari extensions you download on any new Mac.
On a side note, if you are using 1Blocker, do add this site (Make Tech Easier) to your whitelist.
Whether you write a little or writing your first novel through the browser, Grammarly is a must for all Safari users. Checking your writing for misspelled words or grammatical errors, Grammarly is like a reincarnation of your high school English teacher. One of the most invaluable extensions across all browsers, Grammarly is utilized by millions across smartphones, web browsers, computers and tablets. Whether you want an extra set of “eyes” checking out your work or just want a little peace of mind, Grammarly is the best app for making sure you are doing your very best writing.
8. In Translator
One of the hidden gems of Chrome is the ability to automatically translate a website into another language. In Translator brings the same functionality direct to Safari with a free trial, then requires a $1.99 purchase.
Utilizing Google Translate as its backbone, just click on the extension button on the Safari menu browser and choose your selected language(s). When you have your languages entered, hit the “Translate Now” button, wait a few seconds, and you have instant translation. With support for dozens of languages, the simple design offers almost no learning curve, and you can translate as often as you want, whenever you want.
There is a good chance Safari will never rival Google Chrome or Firefox with the depth of its extension library. Fortunately, it does not have to as Safari extensions are available for almost any purpose you need and then some. Don’t forget to check out the best Safari tips to improve your user experience.