Chrome Beta Adds Support for Finding Noisy Tabs

This is a great idea; it definitely seems more effective than just hitting the mute button every time a hidden tab starts blaring advertisements.

Google continues to innovate its Chrome web browser, and the latest beta to roll out from the Mountain View-based company is no exception. This time around the search giant attempts to solve a nagging problem that has, no doubt, plagued many of us over the years. In fact, since the days when tabs came to the web browser. You have likely experienced the issue — you have multiple tabs open and one suddenly begins playing music or an ad, or some sort of audio. Its a major annoyance that sends you scrambling around to determine where the offending noise is coming from.

Now Google attempts to solve this issue with a new feature in this latest build of Chrome. “Have you ever shuffled through your tabs to figure out where that sound or music is coming from? We hear you! With today’s latest Chrome Beta release, you can now visually scan your tabs for a speaker icon to quickly find the offender”, states Google software engineer Yuri Wiitala.

Its a simple fix for a vexing problem. The latest version of Chrome simply displays a speaker icon in the tab — indicating from which the noise is emitting from.


Note: The feature had been integrated before in development builds of the web browser, then removed again, before it got added again to the browser and is now making its way to the beta and later on stable builds of Google Chrome.

Its actually not the only improvement made in this latest version of the web browser. Google also has added icons to indicate if a tab is using your webcam or “casting” to your TV.

For Windows 8 customers, there is a slightly different look to the Metro mode, as Google has made the interface a bit more “Chromebook”-like, adding the ability to manage multiple windows and also quickly get to your favorite Chrome Apps with an integrated app launcher. The company also has improved malware detection to help protect customers.


Both Chrome and Firefox continue to innovate at a staggering rate. While many iterations show little progress and seem more bug fixes than new versions, this latest update from Google displays real progress. As far as security, it remains to be seen what progress has been made, but the new icons displayed on tabs are a clear innovation, and one that should be appreciated by many customers.

If you use a lot of tabs and tend to load websites in advance without switching to them immediately, you may like the feature addition to Chrome, as it points at the offending — that means noise making — tab right away so that you can take care of it right there.

Controls to mute it from the tab header without going there would be handy, but that does not seem to have been implemented yet.

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