How to Stop Autoplay Videos in Safari
When you’re browsing the web via Safari on your Mac or iOS device and a pop-up video or any other audio/visual content starts playing automatically, it can be quite annoying.
Not only can it be jarring and make reading a webpage more difficult, but the content can also play at the wrong moment – during a business meeting, for example. Fortunately for all Mac and iOS device users, you can disable this feature and forget about dealing with this issue.
In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of turning off the autoplay videos feature in Safari and answer several common questions related to the action.
How to Stop Autoplay Videos in Safari on Mac
If you’re a Mac user who has Safari as their primary browser, you’ll be pleased to know that Apple has made it possible to manage the autoplay video feature and set it to your preferences.
There’s a caveat, though. Only users of macOS Mojave 10.14 and more recent operating systems have access to the settings that we’ll be explaining below. Here’s what you need to do to stop autoplay videos in Safari on Mac:
- Open any website in the browser, then select “Safari” in the main toolbar at the top of the screen.
- Select “Preferences,” then switch to the “Websites” tab in the new window.
- On the panel on the left, select “Auto-Play.”
- Finally, select “Never Auto-Play” under the “Currently Open Websites” section.
Keep in mind that these steps will stop autoplay for the opened website only. To stop autoplay on all websites, here’s what you need to do:
- Open Safari, then follow the “Safari>Preference>Websites” path.
- In the “Auto-Play” section, find the “When visiting other websites” option at the bottom of the pop-up window.
- Select “Never Auto-Play.”
Now you know how to disable autoplay for only one website or all of them. However, you can also stop autoplay for specific websites in Safari as well. To do that, open the websites in separate tabs in Safari and set the autoplay video preferences for each.
The list of the websites with disabled autoplay will appear under the “Configured Websites” section in the “Auto-Play” menu. However, if your preferences already prevent autoplay on all websites, you’ll need to disable it first.
Another Way to Stop Autoplay Video in Safari on Mac
There is a shortcut to stop the autoplay video feature on Safari on Mac that can come in handy from time to time. It’s especially useful when you know you’re entering a website that typically has audiovisual content that will start immediately. Here’s how it works:
- Open the website in Safari and then right-click on the address bar.
- From the drop-down menu, select “Settings for This Website.”
- Next to “Auto-Play,” select “Never Auto-Play.”
You can also choose to “Stop Media with Sound,” which means Safari will stop automatically playing videos that have sound. However, videos without sound will continue to play.
This option is useful when visiting a website you’ve previously never visited before, and you haven’t disabled autoplay for all websites.
How to Stop Autoplay Videos in Safari on the iPhone
Approximately half of all internet searches start on a mobile device. And since Safari is the default iPhone browser, it makes sense that many users rely on it for their browsing activity while on the go.
This also means that if you’ve opened a webpage in Safari on iPhone and the audio portion of a video starts blasting right away (on public transportation, for example), that could be quite embarrassing.
Because you never know what you’ll come across when hopping from a new website to another new website on Safari, you can completely disable the feature.
Follow these steps to stop autoplay in Safari on iPhone:
- Open the “Settings” app on your iPhone.
- Tap on “Accessibility.”
- Then, tap on “Motions” and then “Auto-Play Video Previews.”
That’s all there is to it. However, it’s important to point out that by disabling this feature, you won’t be able to see video previews for any native iPhone app either.
That means you won’t see previews of videos in your camera roll, for example. It also means that if you’re using a third-party app (such as Chrome) for browsing, this setting won’t apply.
Another way to disable autoplay on iPhone is to go to iTunes & App Store, then “Settings,” and turn off the “Video Autoplay” option. Unfortunately, this will in no way affect the autoplay feature in Safari.
How to Stop Autoplay Videos in Safari on iPad
For some users, browsing on Safari is much more convenient on an iPad. But those videos that start playing automatically can bother you, nonetheless.
To stop the autoplay in Safari on iPad, you’ll also need to go to “Accessibility” settings, the same as with iPhone. So, let’s guide you through the steps one more time:
- Open the “Settings” app on your iPad.
- Select “Accessibility” and then “Motions.”
- There, make sure to turn off the “Auto-Play Video Previews” option.
1. Will This Stop Auto-Playing Videos on ESPN, Facebook, and the Daily Mail?
If you disable the “Auto-Play Video Previews” on your iPhone or iPad, it will stop all videos from auto-playing on any website, as long as you’re using Safari.
On mobile devices, however, you can’t pick and choose which website you want to block from using the autoplay feature. But if you’re using a Mac laptop or desktop, you can prevent specific websites from forcing videos to start automatically playing.
So, if you want to stop ESPN, Facebook, and Daily Mail videos from automatically playing, you must open each of the websites in separate tabs and follow these steps to stop them from auto-playing:
• Go to “Safari>Preferences” and then switch to the “Websites” tab.
• Under “Currently Open Websites” for each website listed, select “Never Auto-Play.”
Alternatively, right-click on each of the website’s address bar and choose “Never Auto-Play” next to the “Auto-Play” option.
2. Does Auto-Play Slow Down Your Apple Device?
The speed at which a page loads depends on many things: your internet connection, whether the site is mobile-optimized, how old your device is, etc.
However, the embedded video that plays automatically on a webpage can also impact how fast the page loads. It might be an insignificant difference in some instances.
It’s relevant to point out that if you need to spend time muting the video or pausing it while you’re trying to read the page, the autoplay option slows down the browsing experience.
Watching Only the Videos You Want
The autoplay video feature is a somewhat divisive issue among users. It has its benefits as it can quickly lead you through content and introduce something that you might be interested in learning more about.
However, it can also seem quite intrusive at times, and plenty of people would rather not be startled by a video playing immediately as they open a website. News websites, in particular, use this tactic to keep page visitors engaged. Fortunately, iPhone, iPad, and Mac users have a way of preventing that while they browse with Safari.
Do you prefer the autoplay feature on or off? Let us know in the comments section below.