Google Kills Flash Advertising in Chrome for Good

Google has delivered what could be the killer blow for the much maligned Adobe Flash. The company has stated that from tomorrow it will turn Flash adverts into static images to protect against potential malicious code injections.

First announced in June, the move has been trialled in the Beta Channel and is rolling out to stable browser users beginning Tuesday.

Most of the Web realizes that HTML5 is the future and calls have been mounting to kill off Flash once and for all. In fact, earlier this month the International Advertising Bureau set the technology as the new industry standard in order to create a richer, more immersive ad experience for marketers and consumers alike.

As well as the security aspect, Flash slows down web rendering to an extent unacceptable to modern users, and it kills your battery as a result. And it’s just awful. And did we mention the hacking?

Adobe has been on an active campaign to move people onto new alternatives like Adobe Air, but the simplicity and compatibility of HTML5 have made it a losing battle.

Firefox recently blocked Flash by default. Chrome users will now actively have to choose to animate advertising content, which Chrome will “intelligently select,” according to Google. Meanwhile, Amazon has banned Flash advertising for all adverts it hosts.

It will come as a nasty shock to advertisers, the vast majority of which are still using Flash.

Chrome doesn’t actually use Adobe Flash, but rather renders using its own Pepper Flash plug-in, but it still doesn’t seem to think that safety can be assured.

The option to kill Flash has always been there. Have a look under the hood of your browser and you will see it has always been possible to deactivate it. But with Chrome and Chromium derivatives now taking up a large chunk of market share, this could be a huge sea change – not just for the browser, but for internet advertising as a whole.

Mobile phones have been Flash free for a long time, and it doesn’t seem to have done them any harm. Chrome for Android haven’t used Flash for several years. In doing so, they have accelerated the decline of this relic of a bygone era.

Flash won’t completely die for a while. There are still proprietary systems relying on it. But this one could be the stake in the heart we’ve been waiting for to make the internet just that little bit less of a crapshoot. But only a little.

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.

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