20 Fantastic Time Saving Extensions for Safari

Extensions support is a relatively new thing for Safari, yet there are already a lot of options for users to take advantage of. Apple’s gallery is even neatly arranged into categories such as productivity extensions, twitter-related extensions, and plenty more to help you find one that meets your needs.

In this roundup, we will go over some of those that can save you time in a certain way. These will range from extensions that enhance your mail, to bookmarking extensions. Read on for your daily dose of time-saving extension goodness!

TrueNew

TrueNew

TrueNew

TrueNew is an add-on that automatically adds a new button to your inbox in Gmail. This displays two boxes, one with the number of unread emails, and another one with the “true new” number of emails, that means, the number of new emails since you last checked your account.

Why it saves time: Logging into Gmail only discover that you’ve already seen the mail sitting there is always frustrating. This tool lets you know whether your messages are simply marked as unread, or whether you have really never seen them before.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Mailroom

ScribeFire

ScribeFire

ScribeFire

ScribeFire adds a button to your Safari menu bar, where you can easily access a window that will allow you to publish content to any of your registered blogs. It has an easy setup, and you can get started publishing content with it within a few minutes.

Why it saves time: If you are an active blogger, this can be a real time saver. Instead of accessing the not-so-convenient interface of your blogging platform and having to navigate through a bunch of menus, this extension allows you to start writing your content with one click, before you forget what you were about to write.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: ScribeFire

Instapaper Beyond

Instapaper Beyond

Instapaper Beyond

Instapaper is a pretty popular web app that allows you to bookmark and organize websites that you’d like to read at another time. Instapaper Beyond is a Safari extension that adds a small button to the menu bar that can easily save a page to your Instapaper account with one simple click, and adds all manner of other Instapaper functionality!

Why it saves time: Sometimes while you are doing something important, you stumble through long articles that you are interested in, but have no time to read at that moment. Instapaper is great at storing these interesting websites or articles so that you can check them out later, at a more calm moment. While there are a lot of other websites that do the same thing, Instapaper has always proven to be reliable and simple.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Brett Terpstra

Twitter For Safari

Twitter For Safari

Twitter for Safari

Twitter for Safari is an extension that adds a bar to Safari, where you can easily access the Twitter homepage, see trending topics, search Twitter and even tweet an automatically shortened link to the website you are reading.

Why it saves time: Twitter can be a great advertising tool for your brand, as well as an easy way to interact and get in touch with your customers or friends. If you frequently visit Twitter and you continuously interact with your followers, this can be a great tool, as it makes it very easy and fast to share links and see what’s popular on Twitter right there and then.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Twitter

Gmail This

Gmail This

Gmail This

Gmail This adds a button to your menu bar that when clicked, opens Gmail and automatically creates an email, to you, with the title and link of the website you’re reading.

Why it saves time: If you are not a fan of bookmarking sites, such as Instapaper, then maybe you’d prefer to store your bookmarked “read later” articles in your mailbox?

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Pedro Campelo

Meeting Scheduler for Gmail

Meeting Scheduler for Gmail

Meeting Scheduler for Gmail

This extension is a meeting planner that integrates with Google Calendars and Gmail to work out a meeting time that works best for all the people you tell it.

Why it saves time: This pretty much explains itself. If most of your clients and co-workers use Google Calendars this could very well become your favorite extension, as it guarantees that you’ll never have a meeting with missing people or ever have schedule conflicts again.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Schedule Once

Minimal Gmail

Minimal Gmail

Minimal Gmail

Minimal Gmail is an extension that makes the Gmail interface very, very basic. It actually gives you dozens of features that you can hide, like buttons, headers, footers, the chat, select inboxes and much more. Oh, and it also hides the ads.

Why it saves time: Minimal Gmail creates a simple, distraction-free work environment. It gets rid of features or useless buttons that just distract you and confuse you. You could have your Personal inbox hidden, for example, and focus only on your Work inbox during work hours.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Madsen

TaskForce

TaskForce

TaskForce

TaskForce is a sort of email inbox manager that splits your mails in three categories: Information, Action and Broadcast. You can then add tasks and attach notes or files to them in order to make your email more organized.

Why it saves time: If you are disorganized and/or get a lot of emails, this is the ultimate time saver. With it you can create tasks from emails and prioritize them. It’s a genius little app.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Carnochan Rogers

Widgets Menu Bar

Widgets Menu Bar

Widgets Menu Bar

This extension adds a bar to Safari that displays things like the weather, your RSS headlines, a calendar and a world clock.

Why it saves time: This extension not only saves time by allowing you to do daily things at a glance, but it’s also very convenient as it is pretty to look at and easy to set up.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Amber Light Apps

Invisible Hand

Invisible Hand

InvisibleHand

InvisibleHand is an intuitive price comparison tool. When you are out shopping online for something, InvisibleHand can find the same product at a cheaper price with different retailers.

Why it saves time: If you are short on money, you probably spend hours trying to find the cheapest source when you are about to buy something online (I know I do). InvisibleHand does this for you within a few seconds, often with more effective results.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later

Compass

Compass

Compass

Compass is an extension that displays important information when you’re looking at an object that you may buy. For instance, if you are looking at a computer, Compass will display a little window with drop down menus that have the specifications, size, price, etc.

Why it saves time: This pretty much explains itself. If you’re out shopping, this extension can make comparing and deciding between different products very easy and convenient, as you no longer have to look for information.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Fat Earth Media

Type To Navigate

Type To Navigate

Type To Navigate

This extension provides an extra keyboard shortcut that is very useful. If you start typing the name of a link that appears on the page you are reading, it’ll automatically identify it so that you can jump to that link just by pressing Return.

Why it saves time: I’m not a fan of keyboard shortcuts, but I know some people that find them vital to do their stuff quick. This extension allows you to keep your hands on your keyboard while still browsing.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Daniel Bergey

LastPass

LastPass

LastPass

LastPass is a password manager extension that does what any other password manager does: provide all of your saved passwords with just one login. But it also fills out forms!

Why it saves time: You’ve probably heard that it’s not safe to have one password for everything you do. Well, if you’re obedient, you have dozens of passwords that are very hard to remember. This extension fixes that and also saves you time as you don’t need to look up every password for every login account that you have.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: LastPass

Translate

Translate

Translate

Translate adds a button to the menu bar that when clicked brings up a new tab where the current website is translated into the language of your choosing using Google Translate.

Why it saves time: Google Translate is a great tool for people who work with different languages. However, it’s a little inconvenient to copy text, open Google Translate, paste the text and chose the language. This extension makes it easy to translate whole webpages with just one click.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: SideTree

Awesome Screenshot

Awesome Screenshot

Awesome Screenshot

Awesome Screenshot is an extension that lets you capture screenshots and modify them right there. You can crop images, add notes, and even upload them to share.

Why it saves time: This extension is useful for bloggers and people who work with web content, as it easily lets you capture windows and manipulate them from your own browser.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Awesome Screenshot

UseKit

UseKit

UseKit

UseKit is your ultimate assistant. It provides a bookmark that that lets you save content, images, add notes and do all sorts of wonderful things that get saved to your UseKit account. The extension makes that toolbar always accessible in the bottom of your browser.

Why it saves time: UseKit is a very efficient tool, as you can store everything you want to remember or use later in one simple place.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: UseKit

AutoPagerize

AutoPagerize

AutoPagerize

Have you noticed how recently Google’s image search was updated to automatically load the next page of results, so that you can just scroll down instead of clicking on the next page? Well, this extension does the same thing, but with every website that has pages. Awesome, I know.

Why it saves time: It’s very convenient and fast, if you’ve ever tried Google’s new image search you’ll understand why. Not having to scroll through several pages to find what you’re looking for really saves some time. With this you can have all your search results, or the whole article you are reading, in just one page.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: swdyh

Google Tool Bar

Google Tool Bar

Google Toolbar

This extension adds a toolbar with customizable buttons that can easily lead you to any of Google’s productivity apps, such as Calendar, Docs, Gmail, Alerts and more.

Why it saves time: If you frequently use Google Apps, this can be a very useful tool for you, as you can jump from one utility to the other with one simple click. Even its graphical interface makes it easier and faster for you to access these useful applications.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Personal Web Design

Mindful Browsing

Mindful Browsing

Mindful Browsing

Although I’m not a fan of these type of add-ons, there are some people who like them. Mindful Browsing lets you block access to websites that waste your time, such as social networking sites or blogs that bring you out of your work.

Why it saves time: If you have little self-control, this can be a useful tool to keep you concentrated in your work and not visiting unproductive sites.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: Robin Barooah

Sessions

Sessions

Sessions

Sessions can make a backup of the tabs you have open in a session – either in case your browser crashes, or if you’d like them to open next time you launch Safari.

Why it saves time: If you are anything like me, you usually have more than ten tabs open, most of them with content that you intend to get through eventually. Then something happens. The browser gets closed and you lose those those tabs in your huge browsing history. This extension allows you to recover your tabs with a click, instead of going through your browsing history to try to remember what those tabs were.

Price: Free
Requires: Safari 5 or later
Developer: David Yoo

Conclusion

These are some of the best time-saving extensions that I could find, however everybody has their own ways of saving time, as everyone has different tasks to perform that require different tools. Even after you read this article, I recommend you take a look at the extensions gallery. Maybe you’ll find a tool that works better for your area of work than the ones we have mentioned here!

Don’t be afraid of trying these out. Safari makes it very easy to install and uninstall the extensions that you use. If you are even remotely interested in one of these, I’d recommend you try it out for a few days so that you can really get the feel of it. It’s the best way to decide what really saves time for you.

Feel free to share your own favourite extensions in the comments. I’d love to hear about those that you use the most!


  • http://brettterpstra.com Brett Terpstra

    You list Instapaper Beyond as a toolbar extension. It’s not. The extension you’ve linked to actually adds a full bevy of speedy keyboard commands and Ajax navigation to Instapaper. It’s a great timesaver!

    And while the developer of Instapaper is most certainly Marco Arment, the developer of Instapaper Beyond is (me) Brett Terpstra.

    Thanks!

  • http://mac.appstorm.net David Appleyard

    Sorry about that, Brett. I’ve updated our listing!

  • BenJ

    I really like some of Safari’s extensions, however I almost never use Apple’s browser ’cause its just too memory consuming and I have to restart it every couple of ours. It’s a shame. One would supposed that safari should be the best browser for a mac user, well, so far it’s not. I’m using chrome and really like it.

    • http://butenas.com Ignas

      What type os Mac you are using? Because I use Safari everyday in work and at home with some extensions, but I’ve never faced the problem like this – restart every two hours… I’ve never restarted my Safari because of that… And maybe this is not the problem of Safari, just check extensions, how they eats memory, because it could be (90%) that some extension just making crazy stuff and you loosing memory then… Btw Chrome is also nice browser :)

      • BenJ

        Thanks for your answer Ignas, I’m running 10.6.4 with the last release of safari 5.0.2 but it’s an recurring safari issue. I notice it with or without extensions, for a year now and I think apple knows about it considering that there’re plenty of post regarding this topic on the apple support section of apple.com.

        It’s a shame because I like how it’s shapped but still, as you said chrome is a nice browser ;)

  • http://cargocollective.com/vitorhugo Vitor Hugo Maia

    off topic :

    Any tip in how to change the default safari 5 URL KEYWORD behavior ?

    I wish safari could search google by entering the terms in URL field, like Chrome and Firefox.

    Anyone ?

    Btw nice list.

  • http://fairheadcreative.com Adam Fairhead

    The LastPass extension is invaluable. I run it on all my browsers, so no matter where I’m browsing I can still access everything!

    I just wish they’d make their iPhone app a little … prettier.

  • http://www.thelifething.com Jonny GIbaud

    Great post.

    Just a quick suggestion. I like the “Why it saves time” summaries but it took me a while to see them when I was scanning the article. If you made “Why it saves time” bold you would make the user experience easier.

    Just a thought, hope it helps.

  • Jane Graham

    Awesome Screenshot is just that — awesome! I use this handy tool heaps.

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