Software UI design tends to evolve over time as developers and companies try to introduce new design elements that are supposed to be “better”. Sometimes these designs are indeed for the better, but sometimes it feels like they’re redesigned for no other reason than just to bring about a new look.
That seems to be the general sentiment that many have with Safari. At WWDC 2021, Apple showed off its next macOS update with Monterey, and one of the controversial changes was to the way Safari handled tabs. There was so much backlash that it appears that Apple has pretty much backtracked on all the changes and will be bringing back the old Safari tab design, as spotted by John Gruber of Daring Fireball.
Now, this isn’t to say that Apple is fully admitting defeat. For those who actually do prefer the new tab design, it will be there but as an option. What Apple has done is that they brought back the old design and are using it as the default look, but users who prefer the new design where the tab also functions as a the URL bar, you can always enable it in Safari’s settings.
This isn’t the first time Apple backtracked on Safari’s design. Earlier this year, Apple also gave users an option to bring back the old Safari URL bar placement for iOS, where previously the company pushed it to the bottom with support for gestures, but they later gave users the option of using the previous URL bar placement.