Google outlines plans to end Flash by 2017

It looks like it’s becoming increasingly easy to predict a time of death for Flash.

Google has publicly released a deprecation plan whereby the Adobe plugin will become more difficult to access.

It follows a similar move by Firefox in July 2015.

While the goal was not stated, it would seem that browser makers want to attempt to sway web developers to switch to HTML5-based interfaces by tweaking the user experience.

Google intends to disable Flash by default in the Chrome browser by Q4 2016.

Instead, users will have to manually enable it on every website that they visit, essentially forcing them to jump through hoops unless the website converts to an HTML5 experience.

There are ten websites essentially the top internet domains that will be exempt from this change, at least for the time being.

YouTube.com, Facebook.com, Yahoo.com, VK.com, Live.com, Yandex.ru, OK.ru, Twitch.tv, Amazon.com and Mail.ru make up the list. Even this exemption will end after a year, meaning by Q4 2017, Flash on any website will have to be manually enabled.

For businesses requiring Flash for internal operations, Chrome will add “policy controls so that enterprises will be able to select the appropriate experience for their users, which will include the ability to completely disable the feature,” Google said.

Despite this and other coordinated efforts among browsers to make Flash a thing of the past, it could take quite some time for Flash to completely disappear. While videos can now be streamed in HTML5, other content like games are still a staple of the technology.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Dave Yin
Dave Yin
Digital Staff Writer at Computer Dealer News, covering Canada's IT channel.

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