Flash was an essential part of the internet in years past, but it has also been a drag on performance and the source of a great many security vulnerabilities. At the moment, HTML5 is a greater way to get the similar kind of communicating content running on the web, and it works on mobile devices. The next phase in Adobe Flash’s distressingly sluggish expiry starts next month when Google Chrome begins blocking all Flash content.This will come as part of the Chrome 53 update, which should be available in early September. Chrome 53 will block all the small, non-visible Flash elements on web pages. These are typically tracking platforms and page analytics, but they can slow down page loads just like larger Flash content. This is not Google’s first challenge to de-emphasize Flash on the web. Last year in Chrome 52, Google made most Flash content “click-to-play.”Google says that all Chrome users will see a benefit from this move. All the Flash objects stocking in the background can make page loading lethargic. If you’re on a laptop, Flash also eat up power and decreases your battery life. Flash’s innate inefficiency is why it never took off on mobile devices.
While Flash content will be jammed in overall, Google is creating a temporary exception for some popular sites that still rely greatly upon Flash. Those include Facebook, Twitter, and Yahoo, among others. You’ll be prompted to enable Flash on these sites when loading them, but Google plans to phase out the Flash whitelist over time. When Chrome 55 rolls out in December, HTML5 will become the default experience the writing is on the wall for Flash; it’s not just Google conducting a war on the archaic plug-in. Firefox 48 was announced last week with some Flash content being click-to-play and all Flash being blocked by default in 2017. Even Microsoft is cutting Flash off at the knees. In the Windows 10 anniversary update, Edge uses click-to-play for non-essential Flash elements. Another year or two and we’ll be all done with this.