Adobe Flash Player is a browser plug-in and application runtime that is capable of delivering consistent and sharp user experiences, video/audio playback, alongside exciting gameplay.
The main highlights of the Adobe Flash Player are:
- Immersive experience thanks to Flash video, applications, and content with full-screen mode.
- High-quality, Low bandwidth video with enhanced compression algorithms.
- High-fidelity text using an advanced text rendering engine.
- Real-time dynamic effects thanks to filters like Glow, Bevel, Convolution, Color Matrix, Blur, DropShadow, Gradient Glow, Gradient Bevel, and Displacement Map.
- Advanced media compositions with 8-bit video alpha channels.
- Blend modes, stroke enhancements, and radial gradient.
- New image formats: PNG, Progressive JPEG, and GIF.
Adobe Flash Player used to be known as Shockwave Flash in Internet Explorer and Firefox, as some of you might recall.
It was released on January 1, 1996, and it was considered revolutionary back in that time.
The player features native support for many data formats, some of which can be accessed only via the ActionScript scripting interface.
It is capable of operating with formats like XML, JSON, AMF, and SWF.
Flash Player is mainly a multimedia and graphics platform and has supported raster graphics and vector graphics since its earliest builds. It can run the following multimedia formats which it can natively decode and play: MP3, FLV, PNG, JPEG, GIF.
Until the 10th version of the Flash player, there was no support for GPU acceleration. The 10th version introduced a limited form of support for shaders on materials in the form of the Pixel Bender API, but still didn’t include GPU-accelerated 3D vertex processing. A significant change came in version 11, which introduced a new low-level API known as Stage 3D, which featured full GPU acceleration. However, the partial support for GPU acceleration in Pixel Bender was entirely removed in Flash 11.8, provoking the disruption of some projects like MIT’s Scratch, which lacked the required workforce to recode their applications fast enough.
Present generations of Flash Player are optimized to run hardware acceleration for video playback and 3D graphics rendering on a vast domain of devices, including desktop computers. Performance resembles HTML5 video playback.