Let’s say you want to visit a website built on one of the new gTLD domain names from your iPhone. If you type that domain name into your browser bar using Safari, the default Internet browser for the iPhone, you’ll be taken to a Google search page instead of the website you intended to visit. [Update: This only happens if you don’t have the newest version of Safari.]
According to a thread in the Apple Support Community started on April 10th as well as some personal testing, Safari doesn’t seem to be recognizing the new gTLD domain names as being valid urls yet. Other browsers don’t seem to have an issue with this, and it is unclear why this remains an issue, similar to the issue related to Skype not recognizing new gTLD domain names.
In order to visit a new gTLD website using Safari on the iPhone, you must do one of two things:
- Enter the url in the browser bar with the leading http://
- Visit Google, search for the website, and click through to the website via the search page
From what I understand, once you visit a website built on a new gTLD one time, Safari will recognize it going forward. If you haven’t visited that website before, it’s not as simple as navigating directly to the website.
According to NetMarketShare.com, Safari only has a 5.68% market share for desktop Internet browsing, so this in’t a major issue right now for people who use their desktop computers to browse the Internet. On mobile though, Safari has a commanding 53.91% market share, making it more of an issue.
I would bet that Apple will make an update to Safari in the near future that will eliminate this problem, but obviously I have no idea when that will happen nor do I know if that is a certainty. In the meantime, it is something to be aware of if you are planning on developing a website on a new gTLD domain name, especially if it’s a topical website that is time sensitive.
Thanks to Bram for sharing this with me.
Update: After publishing this article and hearing some feedback, I installed the latest version of Safari for my computer (version 6.1.3), and it now allows me to directly navigate to new gTLD websites without sending me to a Google search page.
This is the fault of the unified search box which in my opinion amounts to a hack to try and do something that shouldnt be done. Thats why there are supposed to be a search box and a url box. Lame they have to go and hack my browser to accomodate for people that don’t know how to use a computer. And now they have to keep updating it to accomodate for each new tld which I guess in reality isn’t that much work at least. It also drives me crazy when I actually do want to search with a domain name as my query. Have to go to Google.com specifically to do it and now google’s search box on my laptop always automatically redirects my typing back into the unified search bar as soon as I type so I have to do some stuff to trick it to let me search for a domain name.
This doesn’t appear to be a problem when running Safari on proper computers.
I have 5.1.7, which appears to be the last version Apple made, installed on my Windows laptop and new gTLDs resolve just fine.
I never had any issues with Safari on my computer (probably already had the latest version), but I have the issue on my iPhone. Just updated to iOS 7.1 but that didn’t fix anything (normally an iOS update updates Safari as well).
“Safari doesn’t seem to be recognizing the new gTLD domain names as being valid urls yet.
Even when they do, internet users wont trust them, Trust is the biggest factor domainers overlook when investing in a new TLD, their gobbling up GTLD’s like candy and scratching their head wondering why end users aren’t buying them, The only people who are buying GTLD’s is other domainers on a HUNCH they will be popular.