Chrome’s picture in picture mode may soon support non-video contents

Chrome PiP

In October 2018, Google enabled support for Picture-in-Picture
(PiP) inside the Chrome browser. This feature allowed websites
to display a floating video popup outside the browser container
and let users watch the content while using other applications.

PiP is useful and it does improve multitasking to some extent,
but there hasn’t been any way to load non-video contents in the
picture-in-picture container. It looks like Google is finally
considering adding support for non-video contents to load
inside the picture-in-picture mode’s mini window.

As per a post by Google, the
engineers are considering adding “support for requesting a
Picture-in-Picture window that can contain arbitrary HTML
content instead of a video layer”. Interestingly, the content
doesn’t have to be interactive to load inside the PiP
container.

Google says that Picture-in-Picture functionality is currently
limited to HTMLVideoElement only. The API finds the video layer
and move it into a window that is adaptable, but web publishers
have expressed interest for a more flexible API.

In the near future, Chromium-based web browsers should be able
to load arbitrary HTML content instead of just videos. The
Chrome Status page suggests that the
updated PiP mode is in development and there is no release date
at the moment.

PiP for Chrome

“We are adding support for requesting a Picture-in-Picture
window that can contain interactive arbitrary HTML content
instead of a video layer,” explains another document
from Google.

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