September 1: Google’s Chrome Begins Auto-Pausing Flash Ads
The beleaguered technology takes another hit as the industry shifts to HTML5.
Another nail in Adobe Flash’s coffin is getting hammered in today. Google is now beginning to pause Flash-based ads by default in its Chrome browser.
Google announced the move to automatically pause plug-in content, including Flash ads, in Chrome in June as a way to speed up page loads and cut down on battery drain now that more content is consumed on-the-go.
The company also said it has been working with Adobe on the way Flash content is displayed in Chrome on desktops as well. Flash animations deemed unessential are automatically paused while “central content” like a video is allowed to load and play.
A recent Sizmek study showed that advertisers continue to run Flash ads on mobile despite the fact that they nearly always display as static banner ads on those devices. Apple does not support Flash at all on iOS devices.
What To Do If You’re Still Using Flash Ads
For AdWords users who have not already stopped using Flash and begun using HTML5, you may see minimal immediate impact on ad performance because Google already auto-converts most new and existing Flash ads to HTML5. To find out if Google is able to convert your Flash ads to HTML5, look at the ads tab in AdWords — you’ll see “Flash and HTML5 Ad” if they can be converted or “Flash image ad” if not.
There are a number of tools available, including from Google, to convert Flash to HTML5. However, most firms, including Google, recommend creating new HTML5 ads rather than relying on conversion tools to ensure ads render as intended.
If you have been using Google dynamic ad templates, you can switch the template over to HTML5.
If you have Flash ads running on a third-party server (including DoubleClick), Google AdWords can’t determine if your ads are Flash or not, so you’ll see an alert in your account even if you don’t have Flash ads running. Ignore it if you don’t have Flash ads or create and upload new HTML5 ads to the server.
The industry has largely embraced HTML5 as the standard format for animated ads for both security and performance reasons. Starting September 1, Amazon said it will no longer supports Flash ads on its platforms.