Skip to Content
© Seemanta Dutta |

How to browse anonymously on your phone or tablet

You might be familiar with private or incognito tabs you can open on your desktop’s web browser. The mobile versions of Safari, Chrome and Firefox offer private modes, too, but they’re stashed away in another menu that’s separate from the tabs you already have open.

Wouldn’t it be better if a browser would let you search the web on your mobile device anonymously from the start? Now there is.

On your phone or tablet, check out Mozilla’s free Firefox Focus app. This mobile browser automatically blocks advertising, analytics and social trackers by default, and won’t keep any history or cookies once you close it.

How Firefox Focus protects your privacy

Your passwords and browsing data are cleared out every time Firefox Focus shuts down. There’s no need to adjust your settings to get started, but you can tweak your default search engine if you’d prefer a more private one like DuckDuckGo.

Tap or click here to see how DuckDuckGo catches hidden tracking sites.

And if you’re an iPhone user, you don’t even need to switch browsers. Firefox Focus will work in-sync with Safari with a few tweaks to your settings.

  1. Tap the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Scroll down and tap Safari.
  3. Tap Content Blockers.
  4. Tap the switch next to Firefox Focus to turn on the privacy settings.
  5. Close the Settings app.
  6. Open Firefox Focus.
  7. Tap the gear icon to go to the Settings menu.
  8. Tap the switch next to Safari to enable it.
  9. Close Firefox Focus. You’re ready to browse on Safari!

This lets you open a private Firefox Focus window inside the Safari browser. Just tap the window icon in the bottom right corner and choose Private.

Firefox Focus is a free to download for both iOS and Android devices.

If you’re on a Samsung smartphone, stick to the default Samsung Internet browser with Firefox Focus. Just like Firefox Focus, the app comes with a built-in ad tracking blocker that will keep other sites from following your activity online.

Try out these apps. They’re great stuff!

Tech smarts in 2 minutes a day

Get my Daily Tech Update and the Digital Life Hack. Just one minute each and arm you with the tech knowledge you need to impress your boss and friends with how smart you are.