25 Nov 2014

feedGoogle Operating System

YouTube HTML5 Loop

YouTube's HTML5 player uses some tricks to hide the standard menu that's displayed when you right click a HTML5 video. This menu includes features like looping videos, enabling browser controls or saving videos.

I've found a way to enable this menu in Chrome: just right click the video twice in the same place. The first right click will trigger YouTube's contextual menu, while the second right click will display browser's menu. Features like "save video as", "copy video URL" don't work, but you can use this trick to watch videos on repeat. Just click "loop" and you can watch your favorite YouTube video over and over again. To deactivate repeat, right click the video twice and click "loop" once again.

Obviously, this only works for YouTube's HTML5 player, but it's enabled by default in Chrome and most YouTube videos use it. It doesn't work for embedded videos.

There are other ways to loop YouTube videos: from adding videos to playlists to using the "loop" parameter, installing extensions or using sites like Infinite Looper.

To enable the menu in Firefox, you can Shift click the YouTube player. There's no loop option, but you can find features like "save snapshot as", "view video" and more.

25 Nov 2014 8:14pm GMT

Chromebooks Bring 1 TB of Free Google Storage

If you planned to buy Google storage, you might decide to buy a Chromebook instead. When you buy a Chromebook, you now also get 1 TB of storage for 2 years if you redeem the offer by January 31, 2015. You would have to pay almost $240 for 1 TB of Google storage and the most affordable Chromebook costs $199: Acer Chromebook 11. You get the Chromebook for free and you still save about $40.

Until now, Google only offered 1 TB of storage for Chromebook Pixel users (3 years instead of 2). Chromebook Pixel is the most expensive Chromebook and still costs $1299 when you buy it from the Google Play Store.

You can argue that you won't actually save $240, since Google will drop the prices and 1 TB of storage will no longer cost $9.99/month in 2016. That may be true, but you still got a laptop and more than enough cloud storage for only $200-300.

25 Nov 2014 7:14pm GMT

Chrome Will Remove NPAPI Support in 2015

Google hoped to remove the support for NPAPI plug-ins this feature, but that will have to wait until next year. The NPAPI support will be completely removed in September 2015 from Chrome for Windows and Mac. NPAPI support was removed from Chrome for Linux in Chrome 35, back in May.

Chrome whitelisted some of the most popular NPAPI plug-ins like Silverlight or Google Talk. As their usage continued to decline, the whitelist will be removed in January and users will have to manually enable the plug-ins.

As you can see from the table below, the only plug-in used by more than 10% of the Chrome users is Silverlight and it's followed by Google Talk, which is still used by 7% of the Chrome users. Java usage declined from 8.9% to 3.7%, Facebook's plug-in usage declined from 6% to 3%, while Unity is only used by 1.9% of the Chrome users, down from 9.1% in September 2013.

In April 2015 NPAPI support will be disabled and Google will unpublish from the Chrome Web Store the extensions that require NPAPI plugins. Power users and business users will still be able to enable NPAPI using Chrome flags or Enterprise Policy, but only until September 2015, when NPAPI support will be completely removed. There's a deprecation guide for developers which offers a few alternatives to NPAPI, including HTML5, WebRTC, Chrome APIs for apps and extensions and Native Client.

NPAPI is a legacy technology that enabled a lot of powerful features, back when browsers couldn't play videos, handle video calls or run games. You had to install QuickTime or RealPlayer to play videos, install plug-ins for Google Talk or other video calling apps, install Java or Flash to play games. Now browsers are a lot more powerful and the features that are still not supported by Chrome can be enabled by more secure NPAPI alternatives like PPAPI and Native Client, which are unfortunately still only available in Chrome.

25 Nov 2014 1:24pm GMT