The Safari browser is known for its stability and 100% compatibility with macOS. However, there can be a few unavoidable issues the software can encounter.
One such issue is with loading images or pictures on the web browser. The users have reported that Safari cannot load images or render a scrambled or distorted picture that is not recognizable.
The browser downloads images from a web server and displays them using the rendering engine (like WebKit for Safari) to provide a full user experience. But, any conflicting setup or bug with the rendering process can cause the pages and images to be distorted.
The following guide will help you to troubleshoot with image loading problem and help you get a better user experience on the Safari browser.
It’s always recommended to start with fundamentals when troubleshooting browsers or technical issues. Most of the time, a simple device restart can help in resolving the issue.
If the Safari browser cannot load images, you should consider restarting your Mac.
You can also check if the network connectivity is good to load heavy images and files. You can try to ping example.com to check if there are any packet losses.
The network bandwidth speed is another step that you should check to ensure enough browsing speed.
You can find mentioned and a few other first-hand troubleshooting guides in detail to get started with before moving to advanced steps.
Downgrade Display Settings
If Safari is loading textual content and the problem lies with only images or pictures rendering, your device display settings also play a significant role. Especially when the images are scrambled or distorted or only loading a part of the picture.
When your display settings are set to the highest possible settings (XDR, ProMotion, Retina, True Tone, etc.), Safari tries to render the images that match the setup using the most system memory. In such cases, the rendering engine fails, sometimes resulting in an awkward image like this:
A quick solution- downgrade the display settings to suppress the image rendering process. Here are the steps:
- Click on the Apple in the menu bar and select the System Settings menu.
- In the left pane, scroll down to select Display settings.
It will open the Display setup page.
- Depending on your Mac device, customize it to lower performance.
On Macbook 14 M1 Pro, I can:
- Turn off the True Tone
- downgrade Refresh Rate to 60 Hertz and
- change the Preset level to Apple Display (500 nits) instead of XDR Display (1600 nits).
It will significantly reduce the system performance stress and render images typically but with a compromised display feeling.
Similarly, you can customize your device display settings to have minimal effect on performance without much compromise.
Update Safari browser
If you’ve started encountering the issue after a macOS or Safari update, then the upgrade to the code might have broken the image rendering functionality of the Safari browser. In such cases, we need to wait for Apple to release another update with a patch fix. Here are the steps to check for updates:
- Click the Apple menu and select System Settings from the drop-down menu.
- Switch to the General tab in the left pane, and select the Software Update option.
The program will check for software updates if any are available.
- Click on the More Info.
- Select the Safari updates, if any are available, and hit the button.
After you install the updates, make sure to restart the Mac machine. It will ensure the backend broken code is cleared.
Empty Cache Data
The Safari browser stores the images and other static assets as a browser cache in local storage. It helps quickly load the sites and assets instead of downloading from the server.
However, the data may get corrupted or outdated, resulting in issues with images or even the site loading. Flushing the cache ensures that outdated cache and data are removed.
- Launch the Apple Safari on your Mac.
- Click on the Safari menu, and select the Settings sub-menu.
- Switch to the Advanced tab and enable the check box for the Show Develop menu in the menu bar option.
It will enable a new Develop menu in the Safari menu bar.
- Click on the Develop menu on the menu bar.
- Select Empty Caches from the drop-down menu.
After you have cleared the cache, restart the browser as a fresh one. The Force Quit or Activity Monitor option can kill Safari’s background processes.
Turn Off Extensions
There are multiple browser extensions to add functionality to the Safari app that does not readily exist. However, these extensions can conflict with basic functionality like page rendering resulting in a distorted image load. You should consider temporarily disabling the extensions to identify the bad actors.
- Open the Safari app on your Mac computer.
- Click on Safari from the menubar and select the Settings menu.
- Switch to the Extensions tab in the Settings window.
- In the left pane, uncheck the checkbox to Turn Off the corresponding extension.
If you find the culprit, you can use thecommand button to remove the Safari extension.
If disabling extensions does not fix the issue, then you can Turn On the extensions.
Use Alternative Browser
If none of the troubleshooting methods worked, and you cannot get your work done without proper images, switch to Safari alternatives for macOS.
Meanwhile, you can keep checking for updates on your system and, after a successful update, switch back to Safari if required.
We cannot anticipate the exact reason for the image loading issue on the Safari browser. However, the above troubleshooting methods can rule out some of the most common problems that can inflict the rendering engine.
If the issue is widespread, the Apple Developers will eventually release an update to fix it. You can report the issue from your end to get notified as soon as the issue is resolved. Else wait for the next update; until then, the alternatives are always handy.
Lastly, if you've any thoughts or feedback on How to Fix: Pictures Not Loading Properly on Safari browser, then feel free to drop in below comment box. You can also report the outdated information.