Safari now prompts you to use the News app when on a publisher's website

apple News
apple News (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Safari will now point you to the News app in iOS 14.
  • It'll do so when viewing an article from a News+ participating publisher.
  • It is unclear if the publisher can disable this feature.

Reported by AppleInsider, Apple has made a change in the latest iOS 14 beta that directs users to the News app when viewing a publisher's website when that publisher is part of Apple News+.

Specifically, Smart Banners now prompt users to open stories in the Apple News app, at least for News+ partners currently using the API. As implemented in iOS 13, the Smart App Banner framework allows developers to prompt users to download their third-party apps from the App Store, or to open a corresponding link from Safari.

Ios 14 Beta Safari News Smart Banner

Ios 14 Beta Safari News Smart Banner (Image credit: AppleInsider)

In the latest iOS 14 beta, the Smart Banner API seems to direct users to the Apple News app when they are on a publisher's website in Safari. It is currently unclear if the developer can choose to, instead of calling a Smart Banner for the News app, prompt the user to download the publisher's app.

In the most up-to-date iOS 14 beta, the Smart Banner API appears to detect News+ partner web domains, which triggers display of the modified banner. Smart Banner code on affected pages is unchanged, suggesting that it's a change to the way the banners handle publisher URLs. As mentioned, the new banner only shows up for publications that participate in Apple News+. Developers may be able to control which banner appears to users — Apple News or App Store download — though that isn't clear at this point.

This is Apple's latest feature that drives users to its News app. Back in August, it was discovered that Apple News+ in iOS 14 will open all article links in the News app. This means that all links, when pointing to an Apple News+ participating publisher, will now open in the News app rather than on the publisher's website. That move, in particular, has drawn a mixed response from readers and publishers alike.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.