Google Chrome Desktop Browser to Introduce Autoplay Blocking Features

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Google will follow Apple's lead by adding an autoplay blocking feature to its desktop web browser in an update set to arrive in January, the company announced on Thursday.

One of the most common irritations of web browsing is unexpected media playback, which can eat up data allowance, consume more power, and cause unwanted noise.

When Safari 11 is released as part of macOS High Sierra, Mac users will be able to control media playback settings on a per-site basis, ending the frustration of auto-playing media while browsing.

Starting in Chrome 64, Google's desktop browser will feature a customization option along the same lines. In a post on its Chromium blog, Google said that with the new settings, autoplay will only be allowed if the media on a website doesn't play sound, or if the user has frequently chosen to play media on the site before.

This will allow autoplay to occur when users want media to play, and respect users' wishes when they don't. These changes will also unify desktop and mobile web behavior, making web media development more predictable across platforms and browsers.

Since not all users have the same preferences for autoplaying media, Google said it would add a new user option in Chrome 63 to completely disable audio for individual sites that will persist between browsing sessions.

Based on the available evidence, Chrome's autoplay blocking options won't actually be as granular as Safari's, which will enable users to mute autoplaying media with sound, or block all autoplaying media completely, both for individual sites and globally.

According to Google's roadmap, Chrome's new autoplay policies will be rolled out by January 2018. macOS High Sierra – which includes Safari 11 – gets its public launch on September 25.

Tag: Chrome

Top Rated Comments

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41 months ago
About time! CNET is terrible for that, listening to some tunes whilst reading an article and suddenly you hear a dude start talkin over your music.

Let’s hope the iPhone follows soon as it’s worse on that as the music totally stops.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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41 months ago
Not good enough, there should be an option to block all autoplay of everything everywhere, Google.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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41 months ago
I wish Google would take a similar approach with YouTube and STOP autoplaying the next semi-random video. Without me having to remember every time I visit to uncheck the box.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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41 months ago

amen
[doublepost=1505480017][/doublepost]
I was thinking the same with Apple catching up with other phone makers - screen size, waterproofing, wireless charging, oled, reduced bezels :D

But at the same time distancing themselves too when they make boneheaded decisions like removing the headphone jack.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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41 months ago

How are you going to complain about the services of a website, when you don't login to the website's profile?

I understand not wanting google to track you, but you can't exactly complain about what they do with their site, if you don't even login lol.

What are you talking about? It would be one thing if YouTube's main function relied at all on logins, but clearly there is no need to do so if you only intend to WATCH and not upload or comment. I feel confident in my rights to critique the services of a website when they arbitrarily place burdens on the millions (billions?) of visitors to the site who choose not to log in. Autoplay in YouTube is an obvious attempt to artificially increase video exposure and viewership and given the diverse revenue streams and absolute market dominance of Google, I see no reason to grant them any lenience on the matter.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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41 months ago

... autoplay will only be allowed if the media on a website doesn't play sound, or if the user has frequently chosen to play media on the site before.

Google is just being more friendly to ad-sellers, probably, as all they care about is that it plays, not that it plays with audio. Impressions is the name of the game (hence, auto-play).
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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