The latest Chrome Beta for Android lets users play Web videos in the background.
Finish listening to that TED Talk or Talk Show Labs podcast while checking email, stalking Facebook friends, or beating another level of Candy Crush.
Simply open the mobile Chrome browser, start playing a Web video, and return to the phone's home screen or open another application without losing audio. Pull down on the device's notifications screen to quickly pause or play the broadcast—no app switching required.
The beta service currently works with sites like Vevo and YouTube. But, as Android Police points out, background video playback is a paid feature in YouTube Red, so it's likely the Chrome function will soon be blocked.
Still in the testing phase, Chrome 54 Beta is available to download from the Google Play store, and can be installed alongside a current version of Chrome for Android. Keep in mind, however, that some new features "may be a little rough around the edges," according to the app description. Users are also encouraged to provide feedback: "let us know what you think and help make Chrome for Android a better browser," Google wrote.
Earlier this year, Google promised Android users location-based beacons—a function already in place for iOS owners. In June, Chrome 51 for Android also returned tabs to the browser app.