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Black Safari Toolbars on iPad
By Jesse Hollington | 09.27.12

Q: For some reason I can’t figure out, my Safari browser on my iPad is suddenly black at the top instead of grey. Is there some kind of Safari colour setting I can’t find? My toddler was playing with my iPad and I think he might have done something to it, but I can’t figure out what.

- Jenn

A: The Safari toolbars at the top of the screen turn black to indicate that your iPad is in Private Browsing mode, a feature that can be enabled to help protect private information when surfing the web.

When Private Browsing mode is enabled, Safari will try to block tracking from web sites and will not keep a record of any pages you visit or your search history. Your autofill information will also not be available when in this mode. Note that the iPhone and iPod touch also support this feature and will display a similar user interface change when it is enabled.

You can turn Private Browsing on or off by going into the Safari section in the Settings app and simply toggling the switch beside the “Private Browsing” option.

When toggling the option on or off, you will be presented with a dialog box asking you whether you want to keep any tabs that are already open in Safari or close them and start fresh. Note that if you choose to keep your tabs open when turning Private Browsing OFF, those pages will no longer be private and will be included in your browser history.

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