Apple Working on Safari Dark Mode Toggle for Viewing Specific Websites

Apple appears to be working on an upcoming Safari feature that will introduce a Dark mode user preference for individual websites, based on references found in open-source WebKit code.

safari icon blue banner
WebKit is Apple's browser engine that powers all browsers on iOS, and the new option, spotted by 9to5Mac, is referred in the GitHub-hosted WebKit code as "overriding the system color-scheme with a per-website preference." This should, for example, let users always view a particular website in Dark mode, even if the system's Light mode is enabled.

Since Apple introduced Dark mode for iPhone and iPad with iOS 13, developers have updated their app interfaces to match the system setting or allow users to override it. The new per-website preference in Safari would extend this option to browsing sites, and also let users correct for sites that don't display properly in either Light or Dark modes.

In addition to the per-website display setting, Apple is developing another option to block modal popups on specific websites viewed in Safari. Modal popups must be dismissed by tapping a Cancel or other button, and can look like system alerts. Apple also has a new API in the works to manage the process of cookie consent that many websites use.

The new WebKit features are labelled as "TBA," or to be announced, so it's unclear whether they will become available to use in Safari via future iOS 15 and macOS 12 updates or later in the year when the new operating system versions are released.

Tags: Safari, WebKit

Top Rated Comments

miniyou64 Avatar
26 months ago
Apple’s own Developer Portal doesn’t render correctly in their own browser, Safari, making it impossible to accept Developer agreements. You have to use Chrome or Firefox, and the Safari Team lead woman has the stones to get offended that people think Safari is bad. ?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GraXXoR Avatar
26 months ago

Safari is the IE of the Mac. The browser you use to get the one you really want.
Nope.
That's a sort of glib-slash-edgy soundbite comment trying to riff off the old Internet Explorer meme, but not actually true in this case.

I repair macs here in Japan and the very vast majority don't have chrome installed, or if they do it's some ancient version that hasn't been used/updated in years. Most laypeople seem satisfied with Safari.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OS X Dude Avatar
26 months ago
The developer of Noir is gonna be ANNOYED.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
szw-mapple fan Avatar
26 months ago

Safari is the IE of the Mac. The browser you use to get the one you really want.
Debatable. I much more prefer Safari over Chrome's UI and since Apple changed how they distributed extensions a couple of years ago all of the extensions I need are available.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
singularity0993 Avatar
26 months ago
As an app and web developer I completely agree that “Safari is the new IE”. Every web app we make must be specifically optimized for Safari because they simply don’t follow web standards. They also lack features without good reason, e.g. webkit animation is locked at 60fps, even if you have a 120hz display. Regex expressions lookbehind, which was standardized in 2018, still doesn’t work. And Safari is the only browser lagging behind. Just look at how many StackOverflow questions there are asking why xxx works on Chrome & Firefox but not Safari. If it weren’t for the iOS ecosystem we would have dropped Safari support already.

If Safari wasn’t preinstalled on Apple systems, I assume the majority of users would choose Chromium based browsers or Firefox instead. If this assumption turns out to be true, then Safari is undoubtedly the new IE.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
andrewxgx Avatar
26 months ago
can you do a global switch please? i would very much like to have all websites in light mode when OS is in dark mode.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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