Disable media keys in Chromium (and Firefox)

Keywords: Chromium, Chrome, Firefox, Spotify, Media keys

Update 02.12.2021 See instructions for Firefox as well at the end of the post

If you find yourself in the situation, that media playes (e.g. Spotify) are not reacting to your media keys anymore, the culprit could be the media key capture by Chromium/Chrome. It now includes a feature for hardware media key handling, which steal the media keys from other players. This is amazing, if you are one of the few ones who use the webbrowser for everything (e.g. YouTube music) but sucks for everyone else. Especially peeps like me who still prefer to use another media player like Spotify.

Luckily there is a easy way to disable those Hardware media keys: Go to chrome://flags/#hardware-media-key-handling and disable them there:

Screenshot of Chromium settings with disabled Hardware Media Key Handling

I spare you my two cents about Chromium (now also Firefox) should have listened to that one engineer, who said this is a stupid idea because there are still people out there who are listening to music outside their web browser. However, this fella was right.

… and Firefox

  1. sob silently
  2. Visit about:config
  3. Search for media.hardwaremediakeys.enabled and set it to false
  4. Restart Firefox