Adobe Flash 10.1 Now Available

Adobe Flash 10.1 is now available for download. Adobe has had this latest version of Flash available as a Beta for a while now, allowing previews of it on Macs at the end of April this year. If you haven’t been prompted to download the new version already, you should be soon. If you want to download it now, visit the Flash Player 10 Download page.

Adobe Flash Player 10.1 focuses more on updating capabilities on mobile devices, including smartphones, netbooks, and other Internet-connected devices. The update is also focused on mobile operating systems like Android, Windows Phone 7, Palm webOS, and Symbian S60 V5. To achieve mobile optimization, Adobe’s team has spent a lot of time working on “performance improvements, such as rendering, scripting, memory, start-up time, battery and CPU optimizations, in addition to hardware acceleration of graphics and video.”

What’s New?

Global error handler is a new feature, which increases reliability and provides a better user experience because custom error messages appear, which describe the exact problem that exists.

Globalization support is a feature that allows Flash Player to use the language chosen in your operating system’s preferences (i.e. Windows 7, or Mac OS X system preferences). For example, if English is the language that you set up your computer with, Flash Player will present any text in that language automatically. It also allows the user to select a language that is different from what was chosen in the operating system.

Mobile text input allows a virtual keyboard to pop up, when a physical keyboard does not exist. If the screen orientation changes, a call is received, or something else happens, whatever text was entered remains when the keyboard is brought up again. This is useful particularly when using a smartphone with only a touchscreen and no physical keyboard.

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Flash Player now has multi-touch and gesture support (though not on Android devices), allowing interaction with multiple objects at once, or using gestures such as pinch, scroll, rotate, scale, and two-finger tap.

Accelerometer input allows developers to integrate accelerometer input (device orientation) enabling user control by tilting the device. An example of accelerometer use can be seen below on the iPhone.

The user can now watch or use a flash player object on a webpage immediately, rather than having to wait for all flash objects on the webpage to load.

The Flash Player timer slows down when it detects a screen-saver or similar mode on a mobile device, such as the iPhone and iPod Touch’s sleep mode. This reduces the CPU and battery consumption. Default settings are restored when the device is woken up. This could be an effort to entice Apple into using Flash on their devices, since CPU and battery consumption were two issues Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, had with Flash.

Flash Player now accelerates graphics hardware. This means that the flash objects you try to view on a website load much quicker than your graphics card is capable of.

The Integration of hardware-based H.264 video decoding is now present in Flash. This is also a solution to one of the major problems Steve Jobs had with Flash. By incorporating this feature, Flash Player will now consume less power than it did previously.

Browser crashes due to “out-of-memory problems” have been reduced.

HTTP content, such as video-on-demand and live streaming can now be integrated into Flash.

Stream reconnect allows streaming content to continue to play through buffering. This feature even works when a connection is disrupted. This means that when you are watching a live broadcast of something, and your connection is disrupted or isn’t loading quick enough, your video will no longer have to pause to let the loading catch up.

Smart seek allows the user choose what point of the video they want to view, without having to wait for the servers to load.

Buffered Stream catch-up allows a latency period to be set, ensuring that the streamed content is uninterrupted This along with Stream reconnect should make watching live-video streams more enjoyable.

Fast Switch enables content to be viewed, uninterrupted, regardless of changes in bandwidth.

What Does All of This Mean For You?

After downloading Flash Player 10, users should experience a much more engaging, seamless experience with their flash content. Live streams should not be interrupt as much. Buffering should be more user-friendly, so that the content won’t need to pause in order to catch up. New ways to control flash content will soon appear when developers take advantage of multi-touch and accelerometer controls. The best part is that all of this, and more, will be achieved while reducing the impact on the CPU load and battery life. Devices should run smoother than before when viewing flash content, and achieve better battery life.

Also, netbook users with NVIDIA ION will see a benefit from Adobe Flash Player 10. The same type of fluid video, as seen in the video below, demonstrated on the HP Mini 311, will now be present in Flash videos.

You may download Flash Player 10 for your device here.

Via Adobe Labs

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