Google is planning to add a new feature called Global Media Controls to its Chrome browser. The feature will make it easier to play or pause a video from any tab. The feature was spotted in a recent release of Chrome’s Canary development version. As reported by Techdows and ZDNet, if the feature is enabled, a play icon will appear next to the URL. The icon is placed beside the bookmark star whenever you have a video playing in any tab.
Google Chrome: All you need to know about Global Media Controls
When the Chrome user clicks on this play icon, the report says that a larger control pops up. This pop-up window lets users pause, play or skip forward/backward. They will be able to do so without actually going to the video itself. The feature will eliminate the need to switch tabs where the video is actually playing and control the playback. Imagine there is an ad or a YouTube video playing on a tab and the only way to control is to switch to another tab.
This will come as a welcome change for those who have audio or video playing in a separate tab. The change in the Canary build of Chrome comes after Google removed the ability to mute tabs by clicking on the speaker icon. Now, you can right-click on a tab to permanently mute a website. Global Media Controls, on the other hand, seem to be a smarter implementation of controlling video or audio playback.
The feature seems to be still in early testing and Google might be planning to add it to the main browser as well. If you wish to test the feature then you need to download the Canary browser and then enable the flag chrome://flags/#global-media-controls. Engadget notes that it could not get the feature working. It is also described to be extremely buggy and crashing frequently. Chrome is the most popular browser in the world and with Global Media Controls, Google seems to be making it even more useful and practical.