How to Use Chrome’s Picture-in-Picture Mode to Play Local Videos
The Picture-in-Picture (PiP) extension for Google Chrome lets you watch videos on the internet in PiP mode. However, if you want to watch a video from your local drive, you can use Chrome to play it in a PiP window.
For this guide, you can use either the built-in PiP mode or the official Chrome extension. If you haven’t already, head over to the Chrome web store and install the PiP extension to continue.
Note: Not all video file formats are supported for playback in Google Chrome. However, Chrome supports WebM and MP4 formats natively, though some MP4 files may fail to open due to different types of codecs.
For this guide, we’ll be using Windows as the operating system. The process should work identically on all desktop platforms including macOS, Linux, and Chrome OS.
For Google’s PiP extension to work with files stored locally on your computer, you have to grant permission to the extension to access a file’s URL. Right-click the extension’s icon located in the toolbar and then select “Manage Extensions.”
Scroll down until you see “Allow Access to File URLs” and toggle the switch to the “On” position.
Next, navigate to the folder of the video you want to watch in Chrome. Right-click the video, point to “Open With,” and then click “Google Chrome.”
If you don’t see Chrome as a suggestion, click “Choose Another App” from the context menu that opens. From the list of apps, select “Google Chrome” and then click “OK.”
Alternatively, you can drag the video file directly into a new tab and Chrome will open the video automatically.
After the video opens, click on the PiP extension icon, and the video will pop out on top of all other windows in a mini-player.
If you aren’t using the Chrome extension and instead want to use the built-in PiP feature, right-click the video, and then click “Picture in Picture.”
Just as with any other video in PiP mode, you can move the player by dragging it anywhere on the screen.
After you finish the video, either click the “X” in the mini-player window to close it or select the box and arrow icon at the bottom left of the player to return to the tab where the video was playing.