Google to stop taking new Flash display ads in July

Just as Adobe released new Flash Player patches, Google has given advertisers six months to convert all their display ads to HTML5.

From June 30, 2016 Google will no longer accept Flash ads in AdWords and DoubleClick Digital Marketing. Then, from January 2, 2017, it will no longer run Flash format ads on Google Display Network or through DoubleClick.

It’s still too early to dance on Flash’s grave just yet though. Google noted that “Video ads built in Flash will not be impacted at this time”.

That seems to be consistent with its move in September to prevent some Flash animations — such as ads — from autoplaying in Chrome, but allowed video content to continue on webpages that run Flash. That was to supposedly to improve Chrome’s performance and reduce its impact on computers.

Though further sidelining Flash will offer a benefit to the security of end users, Google only mentions that its complete switch to HTML5 will allow advertisers to reach a wider audience. Neither modern Android devices nor iPhones support Flash Player, for example.

Adobe too signalled its move away from Flash in December, announcing it was renaming Flash Professional CC as Animate CC and adding better support for HTML5 and WebGL. The company released Animate CC on Monday, which helps convert Flash ads to HTML5 Canvas, though the product will still support Flash SWF files.

The new deadlines for Flash ads come as Adobe released this month’s Flash Player patches addressing 22 critical security flaws, six of which were reported by Google’s Project Zero bug hunters.

The secure version of Flash Player for the desktop, as well as Flash Player for Chrome, Internet Explorer 11, 10, and Edge is 20.0.0.306. Updates are available for Windows, Mac, Chrome OS and Linux.

“Adobe is not aware of any exploits in the wild for any of the issues addressed in these updates,” it said in an advisory.

The company also released security updates for Photoshop CC 2015, Photoshop CC 2014, Bridge CC, Adobe Experience Manager, and Adobe Connect.


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