The Bright Future of Flash

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Adobe announcements from NAB 2011

During the NAB show currently held in Las Vegas, many companies are eager to announce more of fascinating developments prepared for the glorious moment. This event has attracted many people involved with Web based multimedia, as the Web is growing increasingly important to broadcasters. Adobe is in no way an exception. At NAB, they have made a number of important announcements. First of all, they have introduced a new version of Adobe’s desktop solution, Creative Suite 5.5. In addition, a series of Adobe Flash Media Platform enhancements were timed for the event, concerning Flash Player and Flash Media Server. In this article, we will discuss the technical innovations of Flash Media platform, and their application in online video projects.

The whole world is moving towards mobilization, and the number of devices consuming multimedia content is constantly growing. Therefore, major improvements in CS5.5 are focused at supporting mobile platforms and HTML5. Dreamweaver CS5.5 has further improved, offering more intuitive support of HTML5. Flash Builder has got new built-in tools to create applications for the major mobile platforms, such as Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS, and iOS. Now you can use a single project to create multi-platform applications and reduce your implementation costs. Moreover, Flash Builder 4.5 PHP Edition has been added with new PHP functionality, providing a single environment for building the client and the server part.

Flash Media Server
Tremendous improvements were made to Flash Media Server. In his inspiring video, Kewin Towes has demonstrated its new amazing features:

Aware of the efficiency of traditional Web protocols in multimedia content delivery, Adobe has admitted to slightly weakening the positions of Flash Media Server by adding support for the public HTTP protocol (also, prior to that, Adobe had opened RTMP specification). Before that, Flash Media Server only supported content delivery via RTMP (including such its variations as RTMPE/RTMPS/RTMPS). The new functionality is called HTTP Dynamic Streaming. We have already discussed its capabilities and features in our previous posts. Still Adobe went further in its advances.
Apple iOS Streaming. In the nearest future, new releases of Flash Media Server will provide support for HTTP Live Streaming (HLS). HTTP Live Streaming is a MPEG2 Transport Stream for Safari HTML5 Apple devices. It will allow the publishers to simplify video platform infrastructure, serving a wide range of devices using the same Flash Media Server solution. Perhaps, Adobe was driven to this by the rapidly growing popularity of the Wowza Media Server which has won many customers by streaming to Apple devices.
The new version of Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder allows users to publish content to the devices based on Android, Apple iOS and Samsung TV. A remarkable fact is that the FMLE end-user license agreement (EULA) allows video publishing on Flash Media Server only, and use of FMLE in Wowza MS based projects is illegal.
DRM Improvements. ЗFor publishers, content protection is a highly critical issue, as it directly affects the range of content distributed to users. Most major publishers approve distribution of their content using Adobe Flash Access 2.0 security features. By the way, we are very proud to have made the very first commercial deployment of Adobe Flash Access 2.0 worldwide. In the near future, Flash Access 2.0 content protection module will be available on Android devices (Motorola XOOM) and on Samsung TV.

See the original post by Kevin Towes here.

Flash Runtime
Finally, let’s look at the important improvements in Flash Runtime. Changes in the client side are primarily focused at user experience, ensuring a new level of quality of your multimedia projects.

  • Improved garbage collection: GC Hints API and more.
  • Multi-threading: worker threads for multi-core processors. The user interface will no longer be blocked while resource-savvy operations are in progress.
  • Stage3D: API used in Molehill (it is already available in the incubator).
  • Multi-threaded video: decoding of H.264 data into a separate stream (H.264 is decoded by GPU), with networking delegated to another thread. All this results in higher quality and smooth playback.

Please find the original post here.

Wishing you success in pushing your content to the whole variety of fascinating mobile devices and platforms!

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