Is there a way to get Brave to open links to sites that I have associated apps for?

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Description of the issue:
How can this issue be reproduced?

  1. Going to any page that has an associated app, i.e. Facebook, Artstation etc.

Expected result:

My understanding is that it would open it in the associated app instead of another tab that I have to then log into. I have read troubleshooting on this and as far as I can tell I have it set up correctly.

Brave Version( check About Brave):

Additional Information:

I don’t know anything about Android, so really can’t help. Just posting a couple GitHub issue reports that I think may be related.

Can you provide links to the troubleshooting information you are referencing? I think it would help me understand the issue and what “set-up” steps you performed. Are these Brave settings or some external app? AFAIK, Braves password autofill only works on a per site basis, so you are probably talking about using a 3rd party app in conjunction with Brave, I guess. And what the heck is an “associated app”? Exactly how do you associate an app? Yes, clueless, I told you so! lol

Please educate me if you have the time! Any additional information would be greatly appreciated! I am also wondering if other chromium based browsers work in this situation and it is only with Brave that you are having a problem. Links to related documentation would be helpful! :slightly_smiling_face:

There are two ways to achieve this.

One is inside Brave, which means EVERY link will open in Brave, the problem is for whatever reason the name doesn’t match what it does.

But you find it in Settings → Site Settings → Video Playback in Brave and set it to Enabled.

But Android internally can do it, you didn’t post your android version or the phone so it is hard to know exactly where it is, but usually is around Settings → Apps → go to the app you want to change and usually there is a button like “open by default” or something like that, and then you select what you want it to do, to allow always, or ask every time or don’t allow. That way if you click the link in Brave it will ask you where you want to open it, with the allow once / always, button. Of course it changes depending on the Android version but it is something like that.

But the first one is the one that will override everything while you are in Brave, which might be what you desired.

@Emi Your post was very helpful to me. I think I understand a little more. Thank-you!


Wow. Talk about a misnomer. I would have never thought that Brave setting would apply to this topic. Interesting. Is there a comparable path for desktop? The only two video settings I could find on desktop were for auto-play and widevine. Is one of those the equivalent of the Video Playback setting on Android? Or is this scenario only applicable to Android devices and not desktops?


Yeah it is only specific to Android, Desktop is a little weird with it since it carries technology from decades ago.

Phones target has always been opening in apps so everything was built around protocols and apps opening them. Android even let’s you see which protocols each app supports, so when you click on it, it will ask you or it will open the app automatically.

So that’s the default behavior in Android even inside Browsers, you open a youtube link, and it will open the app associated with it automatically.
So that option in settings, Video Playback in Brave overrides that but only inside the browser, but it works in any link, like twitter and amazon and whatever, even with that description about “video sites”.
But Android has always allowed you to individually change things as well, like if you have 3 apps to open youtube links, you can have a default one or Android ask you where you want to open it if that’s what you want.

Desktop computer have always been different because it was made decades ago, so nothing of this existed, you got an extension jpg, pdf, etc etc, double clicked and you got to the app associated with it and if you have more than 1 app, you get asked unless you set one as default.

With windows 8+ they have pushed more the use of protocols because of the Windows apps. So in a way, it acts similar, or they try to make Windows more like be able to handle all these things. The easiest example I can give you is go to Microsoft app Store website and click on “get” on any app, you will be asked if you want to open the link in Microsoft Store, that’s because it has the ms-windows-store:// so you can just type and go to ms-windows-store:// in the browser and you will get the same message, because Windows knows the protocol so it ask you in the only app which that protocol is registered to.

If you go to windows settings and check the extensions and protocols and you see apps with URL: it means when you type it on the address bar it will ask you for their respective default application, zune:// will ask you for MS Store as well, msnews:// will ask to open News app and so on.

If we talk about browsers features and capabilities, Outlook is a good example, for example, I get this “page wants to install a service handler” and then is listed here brave://settings/handlers and you can set it as default, if you make it default when you click in an email address it will open Outlook directly and you author an email right there, if you disable it or remove it, it will ask you if you want to open the Mail app (I don’t have any other email client), and you can even set it as “default” to always open the mail app.

So if websites wanted, like youtube, they would have the same handlers capabilities, like to click on youtube links and open browser app automatically.

But then we also have the PWA, which in a way adds one more way to associate protocols and file extensions to something.

For example you can test this one it will register the file extension .EXCALIDRAW
And if you go to brave://apps/ and you right-click on Excalidraw and go to settings, you will see it has the “Include this app as an option when opening files”, so it can be used for any pdf PWA reader or anything.

So as you can see, in Desktop, things are kind of messy, you can open links in apps or in the browser, you can install PWAs that can handle files, etc etc.
Everything gets written to registry, so it is not hard to know what the OS is doing, but I am sure if more desktop apps appeared opening youtube links as protocol, then you would get asked, but as you can see, it is not common to find that, not even the youtube PWA has a way to open like youtube links, which would have been interesting.

So you don’t get the problem of opening links like on Android, and it seems the only setting close to that Video Playback would be the handlers one brave://settings/handlers since you can choose between opening links inside the browser vs an app like mail, but I only know Outlook using it, no clue which other app might offer that.
And after that would be just normal registry windows extension or protocol associations controlling everything else.

1 Like

@Emi Thanks for information. I think I am following the concept but I’m not seeing all of the things you are referencing on desktop, but no matter.

On desktop:
brave://app → blank page
brave://app-settings → locked by Brave
brave://app-service-internals ->informational ->the excaliber app is added to app list after install and configuration(?) settings are displayed.

Short snip for display purposes. Actual list of information is much longer.

After install of .excalidraw example, if I click on hamburger menu -> App info -> settings in the app, I get the settings for the app which can be changed. Cool.

Was fun playing with this! lol Thanks again for info. :slightly_smiling_face:

Oh yeah, it is brave://appS with an S at the end.

Anyway, any website can be added as PWA, which is good, maybe they won’t offer the same features and integrations but they are really useful especially on Mobile, because native apps will not remove trackers so at least running apps through Brave will reduce that, it depends on the app of course.

PWA adds some decent integration to Desktop if people wants to have websites as their own thing with no tabs like native apps. Of course, if developers used more features like the protocol handlers I am sure it would be more useful, and as long as developers bring integrations like decent audio volume controls things will be decent. Some music apps or video chat apps might not have a way to control audio volume like tiktok in the past, so adjusting the audio can be a pain, since 1 slider will control Brave browser audio output, compared to native apps, where 1 slider affects only the individual apps.

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