For more than 20 years Adobe’s Flash Player has played a pivotal role in helping to advance the boundaries of what is possible within the presentation of interactive and creative web content. Changing the world through digital experiences is our company’s mission statement, and core to this vision has been the invention of technology formats and standards where none previously existed.
Today we announced, with the support of many of our technology partners including Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Mozilla, that Adobe plans to end-of-life the Flash Player by the end of 2020. The significant progress that has been made on the open web in terms of standards, capabilities, and maturity makes us feel confident that these factors will soon come to provide a viable alternative for Flash content in the browser moving forward.
Adobe remains committed to maintaining our leadership position in the development and advancement of web standards. Our continued contribution to the HTML5 standard and WebAssembly Community Group will include a focus on the underlying technology that will be necessary to support large scale web conferencing from within the browser in the future.
Adobe and Macromedia provided innovation to the web, through browser plug-ins, before the underlying web standards could support the interactivity and creativity our digital media publishers and consumers craved. By the end of 2020, we firmly believe that all of these required media capabilities and standards will be widely deployed and natively available to users within browsers.
That being said, there is still uncertainty on the timeline for when these open web standards will mature to the point where they can support the one-to-many real time communication with video and voice that is central to Adobe Connect users’ everyday workflow.
In order to navigate the sea change currently at hand, we are releasing Adobe Connect 9.7, which will offer users a standalone executable desktop application completely independent from the Flash Player in the browser. With this desktop application in place we will be simultaneously pursuing the creation of a native web-application. This version of Adobe Connect is currently being developed and tested in a private beta environment and it will ultimately come to take full advantage of the evolving open standards of tomorrow.
This two-pronged approach will ensure users are able to enjoy the rich features of Adobe Connect with seamless entry to meeting rooms through the 9.7 desktop application while we simultaneously move the product, and the necessary underlying web standards, towards supporting browser-based web conferencing with full feature parity to today’s product.
As an additional resource we have prepared a brief FAQ specific to Adobe Connect to help provide additional context and information on what today’s Flash announcement means for our end users. Be sure to keep an eye on this blog topic moving forward as we will continue to share updates on our expansion of the HTML5 beta program and more news on product releases that leverage open standard web technology.