Apple Likely to Drop Adobe Flash Support in Next Version of Safari

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As noted in our coverage yesterday of the latest Safari Technology Preview 99, Apple has removed all support for Adobe Flash. Safari Technology Preview is basically a beta of the next version of Safari proper, all but confirming that Apple is officially ditching support for Flash in the next version of its native Mac browser.


This means that when the next version of Safari is released, users will no longer be able to install or use Adobe Flash in the browser. The elimination of Flash support should not heavily impact users, given that most other popular browsers have already moved away from the format. Likewise, iPhone and iPad users won't be affected because Apple's mobile operating system has never supported Flash.

It was way back in July 2017 that Adobe announced plans to end-of-life its Flash browser plug-in. Adobe said it was ceasing development and distribution of the software at the end of 2020, and encouraged content creators to migrate flash content to HTML5, WebGL, and WebAssembly formats.

Adobe's Flash Player has always suffered from a seemingly never-ending stream of critical vulnerabilities that have exposed Mac and PC users to malware and other security risks. Vendors like Microsoft and Apple have had to work continually over the years to keep up with security fixes. Apple went so far as to stop selling Macs with Flash pre-installed, to ensure they weren't being shipped with outdated versions of the software and putting users at risk.

Some readers may fondly recall Steve Jobs' famous 2010 open letter offering his "Thoughts on Flash," in which the former Apple CEO railed against Adobe's software for its poor reliability, lack of openness, incompatibility with mobile sites and battery drain on mobile devices. Jobs also criticized Adobe for being "painfully slow" to adopt enhancements to Apple's platforms, and said that Apple refused to be at the mercy of a cross-platform development tool when it came innovation.

We don't know when the next version of Safari browser for Mac will be released to the public. In any case, it's safe to say that Flash will not be missed.

Article Link: Apple Likely to Drop Adobe Flash Support in Next Version of Safari
 
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profets

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Mar 18, 2009
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Flash is barely used nowadays, having been replaced by HTML5. If Apple users still need it for any reason, they can install Firefox or Chrome.
This is basically what I do. There's a couple random sites I need to login for kids registration of some sort and incredibly, somehow the login process and everything is all flash based. Terrible.
 
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hvfsl

macrumors 68000
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Most of the TV catchup services in the UK still use flash, in fact Virgin's one still uses Silverlight. So hopefully this will force them all to fully switch to HTML5.
 
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Sinfonist

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Jan 24, 2007
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Chrome is greedy, I understand, but Firefox had been recommended to me in the past.
Also consider Brave (https://brave.com). Uses the Chrome codebase apparently, but lightweight and with good builtin ad/tracker blockers. Not everything works, but when it does it's a much better experience for me than Chrome or Firefox (and doesn't seem to "jam up" like Safari)
 

kingtj

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Like a lot of people, I'm glad Flash is finally seeing its dying days. But these "push backs" to force a type of code to get phased out only work well when the entire industry is in agreement. Apple has always been one to embrace changes that involve "out with the old, and in with the new" before most of the industry. They were the first to remove the 3.5" floppy drive, and among the first to remove the optical CD/DVD drive, for example.

Problem I see now is, Apple makes these grand plans to phase out older software technologies but the third party developers are the ones left carrying the load of re-writing everything they've done, in order to comply. It's pretty easy to just rip out all 32-bit application support from the new OS X and call it "progress". But Apple only sells a couple of apps of its own (Final Cut Pro X and Logic Pro X). All the small devs who wrote for OS X because they loved the platform but barely made enough money to justify the effort are much more put upon to rewrite what they did. And larger developers have to look at the cost/benefit ratio of doing a rewrite. In at least some cases, they're going to decide it's the straw that broke the camel's back for them, and just migrate to Windows only.

Flash is finally going away as much because Windows users have mature HTML5 compatible browsers and would rather not run clunky plug-ins as because Apple dictated it sucked and they wanted it banished.
 

D.T.

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Thanks a lot for that clarification; that makes sense.

Chrome is greedy, I understand, but Firefox had been recommended to me in the past.
Chrome is fine, and certainly as pointed out above there are other options that aren't Safari __or__ Chrome, but here's a better way to determine if this is even a concern:

In Safari, go to Preferences >> Websites, and in the left column you'll see two sections, General and Plug-ins, under the latter, look for Adobe Flash Player, uncheck it - in the main panel you should see "Adobe Flash Player" is Off.

Now surf away! See if during your normal usage, anything is an issue, i.e., missing content, broken navigation, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria, etc. If not, stick with Safari, and enjoy your new security improved web experience :D
 

Onelifenofear

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Feb 20, 2019
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In some ways this is a regression..

While it was always rubbish as a modern web site tool as a interactive multimedia element tool there are a lot of things that cannot replace it ( well unless anyone else knows any better )

I could stream FLV videos ( Container for H264 Sorenson spark(!) or VP6 codecs )
you could layer Videos with Alpha channels and buttons and text or graphics over the top and scale it all.
pre load and play out of time - reverse jump to a specific frame and code jumps to markers and control it all with simple code.

Also can containerise all this as an Executable etc.

.swf was a fantastic container of things and they screwed it up but giving it too much access and filling it full of security holes.

Ah multi loading .swfs on .swfs was fantastic.

What else can do this?

Animator seems to be a Hamstrung version of Flash and Abode Director is no more...

https://tumult.com/hype is the nearest I have see for a HTML5 creation of this sort of stuff but it's odd to use

Anyways...even Habbo has gone unity.Perhaps that is a option. Has a great timeline will have to have to see what features it can replicate.
 
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Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
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Chrome is fine, and certainly as pointed out above there are other options that aren't Safari __or__ Chrome, but here's a better way to determine if this is even a concern:

In Safari, go to Preferences >> Websites, and in the left column you'll see two sections, General and Plug-ins, under the latter, look for Adobe Flash Player, uncheck it - in the main panel you should see "Adobe Flash Player" is Off.

Now surf away! See if during your normal usage, anything is an issue, i.e., missing content, broken navigation, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria, etc. If not, stick with Safari, and enjoy your new security improved web experience :D
Fascinating to read sections on your own computer that you never knew were there, or even existed.

Anyway, I followed your clear, detailed instructions (and I like clear and umambiguous and detailed instructions ) and, to my considerable surprise, the Adobe Flash Player box was already unchecked.