Have you been stewing since you upgraded your phone to iOS 15 and Safari’s address bar seemed to disappear as part of the changes to the operating system? As you have probably already figured out by now, it didn’t go away completely. Apple merely moved it from the top of the window to the bottom. This is only one of the annoying things that Apple changed in the iOS version Safari—I’ll talk about others in a moment—but at least it’s one that you can change back.
Before you change it, it’s good to know that the bottom-positioned address bar has one possible advantage: It lets you scroll left and right between your open tabs. If you go back to the old top-of-window address bar, you’ll need to tap the tabs icon at the lower right to open the page that displays thumbnail images of all your open tabs and tap on the one you want. That thumbnail view is an advantage, however, if you keep a lot of tabs open, as I do. It’s easier to pick the tab you want when you can see the previews rather than scroll right and left in a mad hunt.
If you want to go back to the top-of-the window address bar, Apple gives you two ways to do it, one in Safari, the other in the Settings app.
How to Move the Search Bar in iOS 15—Safari Method
The easiest method is to move the search bar from within Safari itself.
In the address bar at the foot of the screen, tap the AA icon at the left end. If you don’t see it, swipe down to scroll up on the open web page and it should appear.
From the popup menu, tap Show Top Address Bar. The address bar moves instantly.
If you want to move the address bar back to the foot, tap the AA icon again, which is now at the top left, and then select Show Bottom Address Bar.
How to Move the Search Bar in iOS 15—Settings Method
The less intuitive and more complex method is to go through the Settings app.
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Open Settings and scroll down to Safari.
Then, in the Safari settings dialog, scroll down to Tabs
You’ll see two icons. Tap the one on the right called Single Tab to put the address bar back at the top of Safari. The icons helpfully show you where the address and search bar will appear, either on the bottom or top of the window.
To move the address bar back to the bottom so you can swipe left and right to move through your tabs, select the Tab Bar icon on the left instead.
One More Nuisance Resolved
When I first installed iOS 15, Safari seemed to have forgotten its Start Page, and when I tapped the tab icon in the lower right, and then tapped the plus-sign icon, it offered to open a new tab group, which I didn’t want. After an update, however, the plus sign went to my Start Page again, which showed thumbnails of my Safari Favorites and, under a new Shared with You header, thumbnails of sites that friends and family sent me via messages.
After a couple of hiccups, I got Safari working again the way I want it to, and I’m glad to see it putting its best face forward again.
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