Apple introduced a bunch of new features on iOS 14 — making it one of the most feature-loaded updates for the iPhone in a long time. Some of these features like customizable Home Screen, smart widgets, and the ability to change the default apps, while basic, were pent-up all these years and prevented users from customizing specific elements on the iPhone to their liking. With its latest update, however, Apple has eliminated these limitations.
Well, sort of!
As with iOS 14, you can now add custom widgets to your home screen and change the default apps — albeit with a few limitations. For, the arrangement of app icons and widgets is still limited to Apple’s pre-defined arrangement outline, and the ability to change the default apps is currently only limited to the mail app and the web browser.
So, if you are not the biggest fan of the default browser on iOS: Safari; and the default mail app: Mail, here’s a guide to help you change the default apps for both browser and mail, with your preferred third-party apps.
How to change the default mail app in iOS 14
At the time of writing this article, Apple currently offers support for a few email apps on iOS 14. These include Gmail, Hey, Spark, and Outlook. So, if you happen to use any of these mail apps on your iPhone, you can set them as the default email app with the help of the following steps.
1. Open Settings on your device.
2. Scroll down and select the mail app (you want to set as the default).
3. Here, click on Default Mail App, and from the list of options on the next screen, select the one you want to set as the default.
Once done, you should have your preferred mail app set as the default on your iPhone. Now, whenever you click on an email address, the mail app you just set as your default will open up instead of Apple’s default Mail app.
How to change the default web browser app in iOS 14
Similar to changing the default mail app, which supports a few apps as of now, Apple is also offering support for only a handful of third-party web browser apps on iOS 14. The list of supported apps includes DuckDuckGo, Google Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. If you use any of these apps to browse the web on your iPhone, you can set it as the default browser app on iOS 14. Here’s how.
1. Open Settings.
2. Scroll down and select the app that you want to set as the default web browser.
3. Now, click on Default Browser App. And on the next screen, select the app one you want to set as the default browser.
Now that you have changed the default web browser on your iPhone, every time you click on a URL, the same will be opened in your preferred browser of choice you just set.
Note: If you are running iOS 14 on your iPhone, and you change the default mail and browser app using the following steps, the changes revert back to the Apple defaults as soon as you restart the device. However, Apple has recently released the iOS 14.0.1 update, which fixes this issue. So, go ahead and update your device to the latest update to keep your set defaults unchanged. Besides, make sure you are using the latest version of the app you want to set as the default. You can do this by going to the App Store and checking for the version info, or looking for any pending update for the app.