Adobe announced today that it plans to retire Adobe Flash in December 2020 when it will stop updating and distributing Flash.
The company suggests that developers switch from using Flash to modern web technologies such as HMTL5, WebGL or WebAssembly.
Specifically, we will stop updating and distributing the Flash Player at the end of 2020 and encourage content creators to migrate any existing Flash content to these new open formats.
Adobe will support Flash "on a number of major" operating systems and browsers that support Flash currently. This includes 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows XP to 10, Mac OS X 10.9 or later, and packages for Linux.
As far as browsers are concerned, Internet Explorer, Edge, Firefox, Chrome and Opera are supported on Windows. On Mac OS X, the browsers are Safari, Firefox, Chrome and Opera, and on Linux, Firefox and Chrome are supported.
The reason that Adobe gives for ending Flash support is that web technology has matured and support many of the capabilities and functionalities that plugins introduced to the browsing world.
Mozilla, Microsoft, Google and Facebook have published announcements of their own highlighting the End of Life for Flash.
Mozilla updated its plugin roadmap for Firefox and adjusted it based on Adobe's end of support announcement.
- 2018 Second Half -- Firefox users have to enable Flash on each session they want to use Flash.
- 2019 Early -- Firefox will display a visible warning to users if a site uses Flash.
- 2019 -- Flash is disabled by default. Users won't be prompted anymore to enable Flash, but Flash may still be activated on certain sites by users.
- 2020-- Flash support is removed from Firefox. Firefox ESR continues to support Flash until the end of 2020.
- 2021 -- Firefox won't load the Flash plugin anymore when Adobe stops shipping security updates for Flash in December 2020
Microsoft announced on the Microsoft Edge development blog how it plans to retire Adobe Flash in company products
- 2018 -- Microsoft Edge requires users to enable Flash for each session individually. Internet Explorer continues to allow Flash.
- 2019 mid to late -- Flash is disabled by default in Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer. Users have options to re-enable Flash.
- 2020 end -- Adobe Flash is removed from Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer. Flash cannot be run anymore.
Google announced on the company blog that Flash will be retired in Google Chrome as well.The company did not publish a roadmap but stated that it will remove Flash completely from Google Chrome toward the end of 2020.
Flash will be retired at the end of 2020. This means that it will be supported for the next two and a half years by Adobe and major browser developers.
This should give sites that rely on Flash ample time to develop plugin-less versions of their services using modern web technologies.
Now You: What's your take on the end of Flash?