The end of Flash – why is this important for Publishers?
“We are all gathered here today to remember the days of the life of Flash”. Yes, a bit extreme but we need to face the facts – the days of Flash are coming to an end and we must now move on and get on with our lives. But what does this mean for publishers? HTML5 has been taking the spot light for a while now and so it should. It’s faster, cheaper and supports mobile devices. That, over the limitations Flash has provided over the years ie: slow page load times and bad user experiences (just to name a few), makes Flash somewhat of an accepted “end of an era” concept. But lest we forget, Flash was developed 20 years ago (come next year) when Desktop was the only device of consumer choice. So in today’s world where mobile is first – it’s no wonder we are here where we are today – facing the forthcoming funeral day of Flash.
Why is this important to Publishers?
Demand partners will start to ramp up hosting HTML5 creative moving forward for clients and are requesting it already from publishers. If publishers don’t migrate their stack and check their player compatibility to reflect this – they will lose buyer bids and thus revenue. Players such as JW Player, MediaElement, Sublime, Flowplayer, Ooyala & Brightcove are already HTML5 ready. Publishers have a choice - either upgrade or switch players – simple. And then there is mobile. The major concern since “the year of mobile” has been user experience. Flash is awful on mobile (where it was supported) and the move to HTML5 only creative will just fix that with better user experiences to fill current expected demand from the market.
The likes of Google Chrome and Amazon revoking Flash is just the start. Plus, HTML5 will continue to be preferred by users – it takes less bandwidth than Flash which saves on mobile battery life also. As we all know, no one ever likes the “20% of battery remaining” prompt. Especially if caused by a flash based creative.
The next 9-12 months is certainly an exciting time for publishers and their content. There are plenty of tools out there now to allow agencies & brands to convert Flash to HTML 5 – now it’s time for Publishers to set up and deliver this across their premium content.
Rashmi Paul is the Head of Publisher Services at StickyADS.tv