• How To’s

    How to Add a New Default Search Engine to Safari on the iPhone

    If you prefer a search engine other than Google, Bing, or Yahoo, you can add it to Safari on iOS with this jailbreak hack.

    I found a way in the DuckDuckGo forums and it works great. All you need is a jailbroken iOS device with iFile installed.

    1. Launch iFile and navigate to /User/Library/Safari. Open SearchEngines.plist with the Property List Viewer.
    2. Go inside the SearchProviderList array and create a new Dictionary item with the plus button.
    3. Inside that new, empty Dictionary item (should be number 4), add the following one by one. To add in the values after creating them, just select the item from the list.
    4. Name: ScriptingName; Type: String; Value: DuckDuckGo
       Name: SearchURLTemplate; Type: String; Value: http://www.duckduckgo.com/?q={searchTerms}
       Name: ShortName; Type: String; Value: DuckDuckGo
       Name: SuggestionsURLTemplate; Type: String; Value: http://clients1.google.com/complete/search?json=t&nolabels=t&client=iphonesafari&q={searchTerms} (Google’s autocomplete service, substitute with another if you wish)
      Name: Default; Type: Boolean; Value: On

    Back in the SearchProviderList array, look in each Dictionary (besides 4, which is the DuckDuckGo one you just made) to see which one has a boolean field called ‘Default’. Delete the variable entirely (but leave the one in the DuckDuckGo dictionary). Ed. Note: I didn’t find another Dictionary with the Default value, so I skipped this step.

    1. Exit iFile and launch System Preferences. Go to Safari > Search Engine and select the new DuckDuckGo option you just created.
    2. Close Safari in the multitasking bar (if applicable), then relaunch it and play with your new search engine!

    It’s much easier to do than the daunting wall of text above implies and completely worth the outcome. Obviously, if you want to use a different search engine, you can do that too—you’ll just have to find values for the Search and Suggest URLs. And, as always, be careful when messing with system files and do so at your own risk, although the above did work perfectly for me.

    Ed. Note: The above trick worked perfectly for me too. I tried this with iExplorer on the desktop and it didn’t work, though, so it looks like you’ll have to go through iFile on your device. It’ll take a bit longer, but it works like a charm.

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