How Google’s New Feature Could Change Your Web Browsing

Users of Chrome -- Google's Internet browser -- no longer will have to endure one of the more irritating aspects of the browsing experience.

How Google’s New Feature Could Change Your Web Browsing Photo (cc) by marco monetti

The company that revolutionized Internet search engines continues to try to do the same for Web browsing.

Users of Chrome — Google’s Internet browser — will find that tabs opened in the background no longer automatically blare songs or videos until users bring the tabs to the foreground, 9to5Google reports.

Google employee François Beaufort, part of the Chrome team, explained how this new feature works in a social media post:

This means no more “Where’s that sound coming from?” moments when an ad, for instance, decides to autoplay in a tab you’ve specifically opened in the background. … Chrome will delay the start of playback until you actually visit the tab.

Beaufort notes that in addition to curbing user annoyance, the new feature conserves power, because Chrome will not consume extra power until the tab is brought to the foreground. Thus, the feature should help conserve battery life in devices such as laptops.

Currently, the feature is only available in one version of Chrome, called the Dev channel, but is likely to make it to Chrome’s Stable channel version soon, according to PC World.

The Dev version has the latest features but might have bugs, according to Google, whereas the Stable version is fully tested. This PC World article explains the Dev version in depth, including how to switch to it.

Are you excited about this feature? Share your thoughts in our Forums. It’s the place where you can speak your mind, explore topics in-depth, and post questions and get answers.

Karla Bowsher
Karla Bowsher
I’m a freelance journalist and former newspaper reporter who has covered both personal and public finance. I've worked for a top 50 major metro daily and a community newspaper as well as ... More

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