Adobe Flash helped make the internet what it is today, bringing us streaming video, interactive games, and –yes- some very annoying ads. But the internet’s been doing a lot of growing up lately, and between steep processing and memory requirements, to say nothing of security vulnerability after security vulnerability, the sun’s been setting on Flash. As everyone looks to HTML5 and other more mature technologies for their Flash replacements, Google’s doing its part to help move things along, and this week announced plans to stop accepting advertisements built on Flash.
As one of the internet’s dominant advertising forces, Google’s got a lot of clout, and its abandonment of Flash should go a long way towards encouraging content creators to get with the program.
Google’s being realistic about the change, though, and it’s not about to force everyone to abandon their Flash ways and go full-HTML5 overnight. Instead, it’s set up a pair of of deadlines to wean advertisers off Flash, first disallowing Flash content on some of its ad networks beginning June 30, and following through with the ban on the rest of its platforms on January 2 of next year.
Flash had a good run, but there are bigger and better (and more broadly compatible) things in our future. Part of us will be sad to see it go, but deep down we know it’s for the best.