Chrome is getting more aggressive about that least popular web feature: autoplay video. A new post from engineer François Beaufort laid out Chrome's new approach, which will block playback as long as a given autoplay video is in a background tab. The browser will still load the video as soon as the tab is opened, but it won't start it until you visit the page itself, hopefully preventing the usual surprise when a late-loading video starts up in the background. Under the new setup, that video won't play until you click back to the relevant tab.
Notably, Chrome still isn't asking user permission before the video plays — the solution many on the web have been asking for — but the loading and playback will be a little bit smarter and less intrusive. It will also come with some mild performance improvements. Simply delaying the playback won't help on the memory or security fronts, but it will help Chrome conserve power if you decide to close the tab without playing, a particularly important factor for Chromebooks and mobile devices.