How to Stop Chrome (or Edge) From Taking Over Your Media Keys

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Google Chrome now supports multimedia keys. Unfortunately, Chrome will resume your media keys and prevent them from controlling applications such as Spotify when you watch YouTube, for example. Here's how to make Chrome ignore your media keys.

This same trick also applies to the new Microsoft Edge browser based on Chromium. However, in both browsers, this option requires an experimental flag that can be removed later. We tested it in the latest version of Chrome, Chrome 75, June 24, 2019.

You will find this option on the chrome page: // flags. Copy the following address, paste it into Chrome's Omnibox, also called an address bar, and press Enter:

chrome: // flags / # hardware-media-key-manipulation

(In Microsoft Edge, go to edge: // flags / # hardware-media-key-manipulation.)

Click the "Default" box to the right of the Hardware Key Management setting and select "Disabled".

You will need to restart Chrome (or Edge) for this change to take effect. Click the "Restart Now" button that appears to restart your browser.

Chrome (or Edge) will reopen any tabs you have opened, but you may lose any work saved on open webpages. So make sure you're ready to restart your browser before continuing.

That's all! If you change your mind and want the hardware media keys to work again in Chrome (or Edge), return here and set the Hardware Media Key Management option to "Default" again.

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