If there is something that attracted me to macOS (formerly OS X) when I migrated from Windows were the function keys and their unblemished reliability. No matter which app was running, the keys always did what was expected of them. With macOS High Sierra, Apple has modified the behavior of the play, pause, fast forward and rewind keys traditionally used with iTunes or Spotify.
With this update, the company can control other sources of music or different videos. The problem is that sometimes that means doing it with YouTube videos or, worse, with video ads hidden in a web page. This may cause us to be listening to music, press the pause button and instead of stopping it, an announcement will start overlapping the song. Today we will see how to recover its previous operation.
Modify control of play and pause keys in macOS High Sierra
The idea behind this modification in the play and pause keys in macOS is not bad. It is a way to have universal control for any audiovisual medium that is reproduced on a Mac. The problem appears when you are used to a function that now acts differently.
If you want to recover the previous functionality, in 9to5Mac have found an app that returns the previous behavior of the playback keys in macOS High Sierra. This is High Sierra Media Key Enabler, an app with an eternal but free name that does just what you need.
You must download it and place it in the apps folder on your Mac, and then execute it. The downside is that it shows an icon in the menu bar whenever it is active, something that will not please everyone. Of course, once you have it installed and running, you will recover control of the playback keys in order to use them with iTunes or Spotify.
This is the best solution to regain control of iTunes and Spotify playback keys, until Apple enables an option
According to the developer, this app only works with physical function keys. MacBook Pro with Touch Bar is not yet supported. Another solution is to use the BetterTouchTools payment app (you have a 45-day trial period) and follow this tutorial.