Custom Dark Mode coming to Safari, WebKit code reveals

By | February 28, 2022

iOS 15.4 has already given us a glimpse of what new features to expect with the upcoming Safari update, which introduces push notifications for web apps and support for AR/VR headsets. However, WebKit code has now revealed that there’s more to come, including new settings for Dark Mode and pop-ups.

For those unfamiliar, WebKit is Apple’s browser engine that powers Safari and other web browsers. Since WebKit is an open-source engine, the code is public and can be accessed by anyone on GitHub. 9to5Mac noted some recent changes made to the WebKit code that hint at new features coming to Safari.

Dark Mode was introduced to iPhone and iPad users with iOS 13, and since then developers can make the interface of their apps and websites match the current system theme. In an upcoming Safari update, users will also be able to set a preferred mode for each website.

As found by 9to5Mac in the WebKit code, Apple is implementing a new option that allows “overriding the system color-scheme with a per-website preference.” For example, you can choose to always view a specific website in Dark Mode, even if your phone has Light Mode enabled.

Similar to this option, there’s another one that will let users allow or block modal pop-ups (which look like system alerts) for specific websites on iOS and macOS. Apple has also been working on a new API to manage what is called “Cookie Consent,” as many websites ask users for permission to collect cookies.

It’s unclear when exactly these features will become available in Safari, since they’re all labeled as “TBA” (to be announced). They may be added to Safari with a future iOS 15 update or with iOS 16 later this year.

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