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I have always been annoyed at a web page that automatically launches a video with sound already playing. Sometimes I don’t want to pay attention to the video, much less listen to it.
In January, Google Chrome — the search giant’s popular web browser — started rolling out an update to Chrome version 64 with a lot of new features, including the ability to permanently mute sites that automatically play videos every time you visit.
Google Chrome updates usually consist of bug fixes and other necessary security-related adjustments that make a minimal difference in your day-to-day browsing. But every now and then Chrome serves up a little gem. This is one of those times.
Google Chrome users can now right-click on a tab and select “Mute Site” to make sure that the site never plays sound.
Of course, this means if you do want to hear a video from of your muted sites, you’ll have to “Unmute Site,” done in the same manner. But now you won’t have to worry that websites will interrupt your music or general browsing experience. Before this update, I avoided some sites altogether for this sole reason.
Previously, there was the option to mute individual tabs, but that fix was temporary; if you closed the tab or browser, the settings would revert to their defaults, and you’d continually need to mute the tab. Sometimes the best option was just muting my computer or phone, but the hassle was still there for returning sound to my device.
If you’ve opened and closed your Google Chrome browser in the past month or so, this feature should be in your browser already since this was an automatic update. Otherwise you’ll need to manually update Chrome to version 64 manually.
I highly advise updating to this latest version. Aside from a few new security fixes, you’ll get this nifty new feature as well. It’ll change your relationship with certain websites and make for a less frustrating web-browsing experience overall.
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