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The Conflict Between HTML 5 and Flash

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Drawing a comparison between HTML5 and Flash is like comparing two dissimilar objects, the former being a specification while the latter a software. However, a comparison between these two is not out of place if we take into consideration the ripples that these two technologies have created in the Information Technology sector. HTML5 is the new version of Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML) which incorporates native support for video and audio, a feature that has threatened the existence of Flash. Adobe Flash, ruling rich media for more than 10 years, has become almost omnipresent in the virtual world. Now, the conflict between HTML5 and Flash revolves around rich media, or even more particularly, streaming video. Let’s introduce these two technologies briefly and then compare them to see how each scores against various parameters.

HTML5 and Flash: a brief introduction
HTML5 is the latest version of HTML, The new HTML5 development platform which comes with a range of new mark-up features. The striking feature of HTML5 is that it is compatible with everything that operated in HTML4, thus ensuring seamless upgrading. The most striking feature of HTML5 is the newly developed media elements, the major cause of worry for Flash. These media elements enable video and audio support without the help of add-ons like the Flash Player.

Adobe Flash is a technology that operates on several platforms like web browsers, electronic gadgets and mobile devices. The technology is rampant over the web and is offered through the Adobe Flash Player. It is specifically used for interactivity, video and animation. All the major browsers have the requisite add-ons to support Flash, making this technology a standard option for producing rich video-based web content.

Comparison between HTML5 and Flash
Embedding Video: HTML 5 ensures sufficient flexibility with its <video> tag. Due to the availability of numerous options in native HTML code, embedding a video on a web page through HTML 5 is quite simple and convenient. Talking about Flash, it is indeed difficult to add a Flash video within a web page using hand coding. Hence, it is clear that the coding process of HTML5 is much simpler. Apart from a complex coding scenario, Flash involves a lot of moving components like the HTML page, the video, the Flash Player, Flash installation files, SWF files and JavaScript file.

Game Development: Performance is a crucial factor to be considered during game development because enthusiastic gamers will simply not tolerate any kinds of lags. When it comes to the gaming market, Flash has 70% of the share, so it’s obvious that HTML5 is yet to catch up. Interestingly, HTML5 was pinpointed by Steve Jobs as the choicest technology for iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone Browsers. So, the tremendous growth in the mobile market indeed implies a positive thrust for HTML5. Although Flash still has considerable monopoly in mobile gaming, it is expected that the game will turn towards HTML5 within half a decade, a phenomenon all the more evident with mobile game manufacturers already using html5 in game creation.

CPU Utilization: Although CPU utilization by Flash is more than that of HTML5 in some operating systems, it has been found that with access to components for hardware acceleration, Flash and HTML5 are on even grounds so far as performance is concerned.

As we compared Flash and HTML5 on parameters like video embedding, game development and CPU utilization, it seems that the outcome of the battle is still to come. It should also be that Flash, developed in 1996, scores higher than HTML5 on grounds of platform maturity. It is true that presently HTML5 is still in its developmental stage, but it can be a serious threat to Flash in the long term. Whatever happens, it is certain that this grueling completion will help the end-users.

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