Google has announced that it will stop displaying ads that use Adobe Flash on websites beginning in January 2017.
On Tuesday, Google made its plan public in a post on Google+:
“To enhance the browsing experience for more people on more devices, the Google Display Network and DoubleClick Digital Marketing are now going 100% HTML5,” the announcement reads.
Towards that end, Google has announced that AdWords and DoubleClick Digital Marketing will no longer accept new display ads built in Flash beginning on June 30th of this year.
The tech giant will then up the ante on January 2nd 2017, when all ads in the Flash format will no longer run on the Google Display Network or through DoubleClick.
Adobe Flash has been around since 1996 when the web was a far more static place. As the Internet has evolved, the technology has failed to keep up with the changing times. Despite the explosion of mobile devices, it never made a successful transition to smartphones and tablets. Flash has also shown time and time again that it is riddled with security vulnerabilities.
It is therefore no wonder that Adobe itself has rebranded the software as Animate.
So why is the technology still around?
Flash has persisted on the web largely because advertisers still use it to display ads. This places Google in a unique position to kill it off altogether, as noted by Christina Warren of Mashable.
Already, the tech giant has moved its Chrome browser and YouTube away from the technology towards HTML5. Its recent shift in focus to AdWords and DoubleClick Digital Marketing could ultimately spell the end for the insecure platform.
As we await these changes, users might want to give some thought as to whether viewing Google ads is at all in their interest. This might be a perfect time to install an ad-blocker. To learn more, please click here.