The end of Flash for Android (for real this time)


After perhaps halfheartedly staying in the fight to keep things going in the emergence of HTML5 and whispers from around the industry that there was no place for the platform on a mobile device, Adobe decided to stop development on the Android version of Flash Player. The announcement came last November, a little over a year after Adobe began a significant push to get a stable and compact version of Flash onto devices running Google’s OS. While the app necessary to run Flash on an Android handset has received several minor updates since the decision to pull back resources, the standard has been all but dead since.

Nevertheless, users have been able to install the app still and experience Flash content on their phones and tablets provided the browser also supports the platform. With Google’s issuing of a Chrome for Android that lacks Flash support, the signal from the OS side of things was clear. Now Adobe will end any future installs of the mobile version of Flash starting tomorrow. That’s right, for real this time. If you don’t have it on your device already, soon you won’t be able to get it at all. Not even a legacy version.

Back when Apple was openly bashing Adobe’s desires to continue to push Flash despite a shift towards HTML5, we would have defended the company. There is plenty of Flash content on the web, after all, and there is still plenty today. But with more and more mobile-catered sites and a dramatic pickup in HTML5’s presence on the web, it’s hard to make the argument for a mobile version of Flash today. Adobe is doing the right thing by shifting their focus toward better tools for developing and viewing rich HTML5 content, and finally letting Flash die will all but force those still relying on the standard to rethink their approaches as well.

[via DroidDog]

Kevin Krause
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  1. I still have mine!!!

  2. good. i dont like it anyway.

  3. So long Flash. It was a long run.

  4. I can’t tell you how frustrating it’s been browsing the web on my Galaxy Nexus. There’s still so many sites that are using Flash video and after being spoiled for so long, it makes me feel like I have an iPhone -_-

    1. I guess you don’t use the stock browser?

      1. Wow thx for that info I thought all JB browsers didn’t support flash. I just tried a online supersim game of ncaa and it worked! now I can secretly supersim online dynasty games when my gf wants to spend QT!

    2. soon it’ll be better. they will see that they can’t get hits on their sites if they don’t move to html5. i hate it too but in order to move from flash, it has to be killed. imo they shouldn’t of killed the mobile version till they killed the PC version

    3. It’s OK Chris. I’m sure you can find other porn sites that don’t use Flash video. After all, that was the only real point of Flash on Android to begin with right?

      1. All the porn sites worth their salt started supporting h.264 about a month after the iphone was released.

        this of course, is just what I’ve been told, no first hand experience.

        anyway, there’s plenty of other sites that are delivering flash based content that you can’t access on a phone now. having used flash on my phone through the nexus 1, and now not using it on my galaxy nexus, it’s like I’ve been forced to take a step back in time.

        1. That’s his way of suggesting everyone should just use MX Player lol

        2. They do use h.264 — Flash has had support for this codec since “2008.”

          But a plug-in like Flash, or a native app is still needed in order to to playback DRM protected content. Neither of the “two” work-in-progress HTML5 so-called standards, have yet come up with a magic-bullet for video like Flash, since no one wants to agree; Apple is Quicktime, Microsoft is WMV, and now Google is WebM — coincidently, it was platform problems between QT and WMV, which is why Flash became big for video in the first place; most people had Flash installed, where as PC guys generally did not have QT installed and vice versa.

          I know someone in the industry( a long time friend ) and they make the bulk of their money off distribution sales, events, and the PC. Not phones.

          Phones are good for keeping up with the fans via social media and definitely important, but not yet a revenue generator like the other avenues; peeps on phones generally don’t spend money, they just want to be social.

          Now that will probably change, especially with Android tablets on the verge of exploding, so at least with Android — definitely not iOS — we can look to an app to get porn that’s a step above what’s served up on a mobile browser.

    4. Chris why can’t you use flash? Jb? When I had the nexus the apk still worked on jb

      1. He’s probably using chrome beta which doesn’t support flash. (which i do not understand)

        1. chrome isn’t beta any longer, and it is very… sucky when you open a website that uses flash.

          for a protocol that is as dead as Apple says it is, browsing in chrome on my phone vs the regular browser that still has flash is night and day for sites that force you to use a rudimentary website.

          hopefully those websites get the drift that flash is as dead as Apple proclaimed it to be, I hate being as hamstrung as an iPhone user.

    5. It will all be OK one day.

    6. Use something else for flash sites and restore a Titanium Backup of Flash. Problem solved. Now….I just need to find some 12800×800 flash content to view >_>

    7. Google adobe apk and download it to u phone. Prob solved

    8. oh boohoo

    9. you know… Apple been saying flash was useless and will die back in 2007…. yet for 5 years android users been using it. So the icrap users who say ” crapple was right they killed flash” is such a joke. Crapple only said it because they didnt have it. and the isheep said “yes master, flash is going to die”.. hell i can predict and say many things that will happen in the future… are people going to say in 10 years “wow he was right, he DID say it was going to happen…”
      5 years happily using Flash while all the loser icrap people COULDN’T…. the way i see it, android and adobe won

  5. Most importantly, when will all those free porn sites run on HTML5?

    1. Very important question to ask!

    2. hahaha.

    3. You will be happy to know that I have already updated my free pron site to support HTML5 standard for all videos.

      1. It’s been a while

      2. Not that damn video lmao!

  6. well there is always installing the apk file getting it from a website..

  7. u can still side load the flash apk

  8. I cant believe that adobe can get away with this. like it or not, as long as they produce and support flash on the web, they have an oblogation to support it on all available major platforms. I use only browsers that give me the desktop experience on my tablet, and adobe should be required to support it as a major platform

  9. I hope this means that Adobe is fully committed to sticking with HTML 5. I’m ready for people to stick to industry standards more. They don’t call it an industry STANDARD for no reason.

    1. no, it means they’ve started pushing adobe air for mobile platforms.

    2. Which HTML5 are you talking about? W3C’s version, or WHATWG( Apples… )?

      Besides the fact that HTML5 has split into two different pathways, it is not yet a standard. Where have you been getting your info from?

      If HTML5 does reach its pinnacle years down the line — something HTML 4 did not — it still will not match what plug-ins have been able to do for years; plug-ins like Flash, Unity, Java, and now Chrome’s Native Extension; which of course only works in Chrome; and none of these plug-ins are going away.

      As Samagon has pointed out, Adobe is focusing on AIR. They are also working on a solution for HTML5, but it’s more or less to appease the *** that have bought into Apple’s BS.

      AIR is where Adobe has really been going since the beginning of this whole mobile explosion ignited by the lies of a disruptive company. It’s really the only option, given Apple, Microsoft’s and now Google’s direction for their mobile platforms; HTML5 is simply not ready, nor is it remotely as capable as people have promised or would like to believe.

      1. W3C’s is the only HTML that can be remotely considered to be the standard. You say in one sentence that HTML 5 is not yet an established standard and fully developed, then you turn around and say it hasn’t lived up to it’s promises? Well, which is it? The simple fact is that they are still gathering standards for HTML 5, and it will be a de facto in a couple of years. No, plugin’s will never disappear. That’s not my point.

        1. Tell that to WHATWG — those Apple derived hooligans have their own agenda. I’m only going to focus on W3C personally.

          And read what I wrote again at the end. You added your own take on it. I did not say it hasn’t lived up to its promises… That completely changes what I stated.

          Here’s what I wrote;
          “HTML5 is simply not ready, nor is it remotely as capable as people have promised or would like to believe.”

          Yes, it’s a bit general, but I was only reiterating what I had said above in more detail, when I rambled about reaching its pinnacle… There are goals set for it, which we can look at now, and even the parts that are not HTML5, are not up to the task of what people are assuming.

          So to be hopefully more clear; HTML5, even if it ever reaches its full potential, can not deliver as promised by so many. It’s no where as capable as some people are anticipating; hence lots of people believe it can and will be able to do what a plug-in does, which if we’re talking years back, then mostly yes, but also no.

          HTML5 like 4, 3, …, shares many of the same shortcomings. When the browser DOM is finally completely overhauled and everyone can agree on the same page, then we’ll truly have a de facto standard that works, but as of now, the major players are still pretty much doing their own thing – carving out their own locked down platform — and the web has become way more fragmented than it ever was before — I say this as someone that’s been building web content since 1995.

          Anyways, just rambling… This whole HTML5 movement is really just Web 2.1, but with way WAY more hype.

          I’m putting my money on HTML6, it will be the de facto, as its iteration makes it the future… I also expect to push one button for a living and have a flying car.

          1. You’re right about fragmentation. The real question is whether competition for standards hurts or helps. I love the XKCD comic about this lol.

    3. They will stick in the mud because HTML5 is very slllllow

  10. Will there still be an apk available?

    1. No. But you can get it here

  11. so if i have a flash APK i cant use it?

    1. Depends on the web browser. The Flash APK currently works with firefox on jellybean (tested on my Nexus 7)

      1. i have a N7 too thats why i asked

  12. Flash and HTML5 Apps both developed by ECMAScript, lots of “HTML5 Apps” are actually made by Flash developers. If their Flash sites crashed your devices before, then their HTML5 sites will crash you more!

    HTML5 just an excuse to stop the “Native App” level platform tools to enter the closed App Store ecosystem from Web browsers. At the same time, Fanboys has been educated that the low performance HTML5 Apps are the “Future”. After successfully stopped Flash, there are only crappy HTML5 apps on your browsers, which are ways away the Native code developed apps, this means the closed App Store ecosystem is again out of threats.

  13. But…but… all you preachers kept whining that Flash is the only way to get the entire web experience!!! Is it possible yet again (and countless other times) that you guys have zero clue as to the direction that technology goes?

    Oh.. who am I kidding. You guys really are clueless.

  14. On my Galaxy Nexus I can’t find Flash Player 11. Luckily I had it installed but my family didn’t. I can’t beam it to them either. A day early on JB gnex.

  15. How do I watch Amazon Instant Video without flash. Was going to get a Pad Infinity but if Flash isn’t on it then I will be stuck with Google movies. This may be a reason to start rooting.

  16. Oh boy that isn’t good. Well I’m lucky I install Flash before it was announced that Flash will no longer be supported. I hope there’s going to be a replacement for Flash.

  17. Put Firefox on your device and just tap the plugin icon when a flash page is detected. Fox knows best.

    1. you can set firefox up to always display flash.. and not have to tap the screen each time…. at least i can set it like that on my nexus 7. not sure about phones though

  18. repeat after me… flash is not dead! Its just dead as a plugin to browsers. It will live on inside of ‘apps’ constructed to run in Adobe AIR. So your fav. sites will have to create APPS to point to their content now… (Porn or other?) and it will work just dandy or better (since AIR is flash+webkit+security). So its up to the cheapo companies that didnt come to Adobes defense during the Apple-Adobe brawl that will have to spend money now. HTML5 will be great years from now (and as such, us ‘users’ will suffer from the dead-steve curse) until HTML5 gets standardized across all handsets once the std. is finalized.

    1. HTML5 will never be ‘great’ because it is not compiled. It’s only good for simple games and nothing real-time.

  19. It’s not hard to make an argument for flash… it’s everywhere whether you like it or not.

  20. Google doesn’t seem to get the idea of ‘killer apps’ as it cheerfully develops for iPhone, while Apple is doing its best to eliminate Android.

    1. Google seems so awe struck by Apple. Go to any Google conference and all you see is their Macbook totting devs grinning from ear to ear.

  21. I like Android on my phone but I’m not going to get an Android tablet if it doesn’t have flash. I’ll just go with a Windows laptop to get the full internet on the go.

  22. Any way you look at it, this sux that they are pulling the plug without any alternative in place that will actually work. It will be another 10 years before html5 is maybe both widely available and as usable as flash and even then because it’s still available for Windows & Linux (plus mac if you count that apple crap) developers won’t be in a hurry to do anything.
    Screw you Adobe!

  23. Download Flash apk here

  24. It seems IDIOTIC of Adobe to kill it before it is dead! The best site BY FAR for Olympic games viewing and interacting was the BBC’s and that was entirely Adobe Flash. It was SUPERB! and on occasion when I was out of home and wanted to catch up on something, or watch something that was not on BBC1, 2 or 3, I could select the sport I wanted on the full BBC site… WHY oh why are these companies so stupid… Google killing iGoogle another prime example.

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