I have a web app added to the home screen of the iphone. is it possible to open this web apps added to the home screen if someone visits a URL in safari.

i'm aware that the web app added to the home screen is actually running in safari, but i want to open that web app .. is there any custom iphone specific URL to call a web app ?

Example : i bookmarked www.example.com on my iphone and the app has all the required META tags to run as a webapp. now if someone visits www.example.com in the browser, it should detect if the app has been added to the home screen and if it is, it should open it.

is this possible ?

The whole point is that i want to open the app without any Safari UI even if someone visits my URL in the browser.

P.S i know the use of window.navigator.standalone - but it does not help in Safari.

closed as off topic by Gerry, gentmatt, nohillside, jmlumpkin, Stu Wilson Sep 28 '12 at 20:09

Questions on Ask Different are expected to relate to Apple hardware or software within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 3
    Welcome to the site smoizs. This is more of a development question and doesn't really fit this site. You might get a better answer on www.stackoverflow.com, a site dedicated to answering this kind of question. – conorgriffin Feb 14 '12 at 13:24
  • 1
    Not only does this question belong on StackOverflow, it already is answered there: stackoverflow.com/questions/3230147/… – Gerry Sep 28 '12 at 15:16

When you launch a web app by entering the URL in Safari it runs in the Safari app. But when you launch a web app from the springboard (home screen), it runs in different Safari app. Hence the lack of Safari UI in the that case. What you want isn't possible. And it's actually a good thing because the Safari UI offers option you might need to use ('mail link to this page', 'Tweet', 'Print', ...).

What you want to do may be possible through some kind of hack if you jailbreak, although I doubt it.

  • 1
    This does answer the asker's question, though rather indirectly and with a lot of judgement. Short answer: No, you cannot open a web app (web-based app/safari app added to the home screen) programmatically. – Metagrapher Sep 28 '12 at 15:38

This is not possible. A webapp in Safari must show the Safari UI, but a web app launched from the springboard doesn't necessarily have to show this. However, though, in the version of iOS that is not yet released, there's this feature called Smart App Banners that alerts the user if the website has a native app counterpart. Unfortunately, you're talking about a web app, so this won't apply, but I just thought I'd throw that out there if you're thinking about going native...

From Techcrunch,

Apple will now show a link to the App Store (or to the app, if you have already installed it) when you open a site that also offers a mobile app. Apple calls this feature “Smart App Banners.”

  • (Outdated) talk about unreleased software is inacceptable. – Max Ried Sep 28 '12 at 15:18

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .