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BizReport : Internet : September 02, 2015


Google pauses Flash and signals new ad age of HTML5

Google now hits pause on Flash ads and auto-playing videos not related to content and, while users celebrate the decline of the annoying, intrusive ads that disrupt their viewing, the industry needs to look to the future of online advertising.

by Helen Leggatt

According to a Sizmek (2015) report, 90% of rich media ads they serve to desktop use Flash. Google's blocking of Flash would mean that those ads will now be 'paused' when a user mouses over them, and videos will not auto-start.

Earlier this year, security problems with Flash led to it being blocked by default by Mozilla - developers of the Firefox browser.

By pausing Flash content from loading, users of Chrome are being given the option to choose to enable ad content. Google's actions aren't, however, tantamount to ad blocking which enables web browsing devoid of ad content.

While users may welcome Google's move, it's not great news for the ad tech industry and advertisers. Vlad Gurgov, chief technology officer at video ad network Virool, told Business Insider that ""Every single company" will feel the effects of Google's move.

However, that move could eventually prove to be positive, and see more browsers going down the same route. HTML5, which offers most of the facilities of Flash but more efficiently and without the poor security issues, will no doubt be ushered to the fore as more publishers migrate to it .

Even Adobe, developer of Flash, is aware that online advertising is moving towards HTML5. Sarah Hunt, senior product manager at Adobe, is also co-chair of the Interactive Advertising Bureau HTML5 for Digital Advertising Guidance Working Group. The IAB revised its 'Display Creative Guidelines' last month, a move that Hunt says "is only the first step in the process of helping the industry transition into an HTML5 dominant landscape".

Another Sizmek report, which analyzed more than 5 billion mobile Flash ad impressions and more than 4 billion mobile HTML5 impressions in the first quarter of this year, found that 98.6% of Flash impressions defaulted to a static image instead of delivering the intended rich media experience. In comparison, just 8.3% of HTML5 ads defaulted.






Image via Shutterstock

Tags: advertising, Flash, HTML5, Internet








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