How to Shut Off Private Browsing on iOS: A Step-by-Step Guide

To shut off private browsing on iOS, you first need to open Safari, then tap the pages icon. From there, switch from private to regular browsing mode. It’s a simple, straightforward process that should take less than a minute to complete.

Once you’ve turned off private browsing, your browsing history will be saved, and websites you visit will be able to track your activity.


Have you been surfing the web in stealth mode on your iPhone or iPad and now need to switch back to regular browsing? Private browsing on iOS devices is a handy feature that allows you to browse the internet without leaving a trace of your activity. It’s great for keeping surprises hidden or your browsing habits private. However, there are times when you might want to disable this feature, for instance, when you want your browsing data to sync across your devices or to ensure parental controls are in effect.

Shutting off private browsing on iOS is important for a number of reasons. For parents, it allows them to monitor their children’s online activity. For others, it could be a matter of syncing data across devices or simply wanting to keep a browsing history for future reference. This task is relevant to any iOS user who values their privacy but also understands the importance of monitored usage when necessary.

Step by Step Tutorial to Shut Off Private Browsing on iOS

Before we get into the steps, it’s important to note that turning off private browsing will switch your current browsing session to a regular one and save your browsing history.

Step 1: Open Safari on your iOS device.

Open the Safari app on your iPhone or iPad to begin the process of turning off private browsing.

Safari is the default web browser for iOS devices, and it’s where the private browsing feature is located. If you’re using a different browser, the steps may vary slightly.

Step 2: Tap the pages icon at the bottom right corner of the screen.

The pages icon looks like two overlapping squares. Tapping this will show all your open tabs.

In private browsing mode, the background of the Safari browser is usually darker. This visual cue indicates that you’re in private mode.

Step 3: Tap “Private” to switch from private to regular browsing.

When you tap “Private,” it toggles off the private browsing feature and your open tabs will switch to regular mode.

Remember, once you turn off private browsing, the websites you visit will be saved to your browsing history unless you delete them manually.


Sync Across DevicesWhen not in private mode, Safari can sync your bookmarks, history, and other browsing data across all your Apple devices.
Parental ControlsWith private browsing off, you can monitor or restrict website access for children using the device.
ConvenienceYou can easily access your previously visited sites without having to remember the URLs.


Privacy ConcernsTurning off private browsing means your activity will no longer be hidden from others who have access to your device.
Data TrackingAdvertisers and websites can track your browsing habits and serve targeted ads.
Storage SpaceYour browsing history will take up storage space on your device over time.

Additional Information

When private browsing is enabled on an iOS device, it can give you peace of mind knowing that your browsing habits are not being tracked. Privacy is a hot topic in today’s digital age, and many people appreciate the ability to browse the web anonymously. However, disabling private browsing isn’t just about giving up that anonymity; it’s also about integrating your web experience with other Apple services.

For instance, iCloud can use your Safari browsing history to enhance features like Siri suggestions and Handoff, where you can start browsing on one device and pick up where you left off on another. Plus, if you’re someone who frequently forgets passwords, your autofill data will only be saved when you’re not in private mode. It’s also worth mentioning that private browsing doesn’t make you invisible online. Your Internet Service Provider (ISP), websites, and even Apple can still potentially track your activity.


  1. Open Safari.
  2. Tap the pages icon.
  3. Tap “Private” to switch browsing modes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does turning off private browsing affect all my devices?

No, it only affects the device you are currently using.

Will I lose my open tabs when I switch from private to regular browsing?

No, your open tabs will simply switch to regular browsing mode.

Can I turn private browsing back on after I’ve turned it off?

Yes, you can toggle private browsing on and off as you wish.

Is there a way to permanently disable private browsing on iOS?

No, you can’t permanently disable it, but you can restrict it through Screen Time settings for parental control purposes.

Does private browsing prevent my ISP from seeing my activity?

No, private browsing only prevents the device from saving your history. Your ISP can still track your activity.


Turning off private browsing on an iOS device is a simple task that can be done in a few taps. Whether you’re a parent wanting to keep tabs on your child’s internet usage or someone who wants to sync their browsing data across devices, knowing how to manage this feature is a must. While private browsing offers a veil of secrecy for your online activities, it also limits some conveniences and functionality that come with regular browsing.

Always remember, with great power comes great responsibility, so use your browsing powers wisely. For further reading on privacy and security on iOS devices, check out Apple’s official support pages or forums dedicated to iOS device users.