Google might soon add a play/pause button to its Chrome browser that might make it possible to pause or play video from any tab. A current release of Chrome’s Canary development version has a brand new characteristic called Global Media Controls, as seen by Techdows, ZDNet, and others. As soon as enabled, a play icon will seem subsequent to the URL (besides the bookmark star) if you have a video playing in any tab. By clicking on it, a more extensive control pops up that permits you to pause, play, or skip ahead/backward without really going to the video itself.
The function could be notably useful for stopping any annoying auto-play videos, or controlling a YouTube video in case you swap to another tab. It might even be a welcome change, considering Google not too long ago removed the ability to mute tabs by clicking on the speaker icon, although you’ll be able to still right-click on on a tab to permanently mute a web site. Global Media Controls are more versatile, although, particularly for rabid YouTube watchers, and you will not have to chase down any offending auto-play tabs.
After playing with the feature for a short time, I discovered that it might control both audio and video, but not on all sites (it did not work with Engadget, for instance). On top of that, the characteristic was extremely buggy, crashing just about constantly when I tried to make use of it.
Nonetheless, it is nonetheless in early testing, and if Google decides to bake it into the main browser, it will no doubt work seamlessly. If you wish to give it a shot for yourself, you can download the Canary browser here, then allow the flag chrome://flags/#global-media-controls