For a very long time, web browsers have had a feature that can occasionally be frustrating. Dragging and dropping a file to a browser tab will open the file in the tab. This is fine if it’s intended, but it can be aggravating if you were trying to drop a file into an upload box and then you’re suddenly navigated away from the page. Thankfully, Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge are solving this problem.
The big issue with this behavior is that there’s no warning of what action will happen. You could be trying to drop something into a box to upload a file to a webpage or simply drop a file accidentally while dragging it across the screen. Either way, the page will navigate to the local file without warning, potentially causing you to lose your progress on a form or data.
Microsoft Edge developer Eric Lawrence detailed a change coming to Edge and Chrome that solves this problem. By default, the browser will no longer open the file in the current tab if you drop it on the page. Instead, it will open the file in a new tab. However, you can still open a file in the current tab if you drop it on the tab itself at the top of the browser.
Users can easily lose work if they drag/drop a file or URL into a tab that does not consume the dropped data (e.g. as a file upload). Rather than navigating the current tab (blowing away whatever was in it), instead open the dropped URL in a new foreground tab.
The change is present in Chromium version 85.0.4163.0. Google has already included this behavior change in the latest Chrome Canary update, and it will be coming to Microsoft’s Chromium-based Edge browser soon. Keep an eye out for the updated functionality in stable updates soon.
Source 1: Twitter | Source 2: Chromium