What The End of Adobe Flash Means for Online Gambling

Written by: Webster Lupton, Casino, Gambling, and Sports Journalist
5 minute read

The End of Flash PlayerThe Adobe Flash Player era is ending in December 2020. The format is becoming increasingly redundant and is being blocked from major browsers to prevent any security breaches potentially threatening the user pool.

This issue and other similar ones have been the critical drivers towards Adobe’s official decision to shut down updates and support for Flash. Many businesses – online education platforms, gaming, and online casinos – have a period of transition ahead. The deadline should see them rise from the ashes or fail alongside the fallen Flash player.

News Highlights

  • Adobe will cease support of their Flash product on December 31, 2020.
  • Internet browsers, as well as individual online platforms, are taking measures to smooth out the transition.
  • Online casinos running their no-download instant-play versions via Flash face multiple obstacles.

The Flash Player Phase-Out

All the major browser brands have been taking necessary measures to phase out Flash from their programs. This is expected to end with the complete inability to access platforms running Flash coming the first day of 2021.

As things are going so far, Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer are following a phasing-out timetable. Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome browsers are also keeping up with this tactic.

Given this progress, and in collaboration with several of our technology partners – including Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Mozilla – Adobe is planning to end-of-life Flash. Specifically, we will stop updating and distributing the Flash Player at the end of 2020 and encourage content creators to migrate any existing Flash content to these new open formats.


A Timeline of the Flash Player Update

Take a look at the events following Adobe’s announcement that it will no longer support Flash Player.


During the second half of 2017 and the first half of 2018, Microsoft Edge started asking for permission to run Flash per the first visit to a website.


In the second half of 2018, the request for permission to run Flash was repeated upon each session.


The Microsoft Edge browser, along with Mozilla and Chrome following the same phase-out, require users to re-enable Flash manually from their browser settings, along with the same requests to run Flash as before.


By the end of 2020, these browsers, along with Internet Explorer which is expected to continue running Flash, will all completely phase-out the player, and prevent access to sites using it.

Considering this will coincide with Adobe’s end date for Flash support, it will give rise to new and improved, as well as safer formats. Many platforms and online establishments are already seeking conversion solutions, with HTML5, WebAssembly, and WebGL as the top replacement options.

What Are Companies Doing About It?

Major companies started the transition from the Flash player well before Adobe came forward with an official statement in mid-2017. The format has long been a pillar for online platforms providing all sorts of educational, video, multimedia, animation, and graphic design content. Nevertheless, since the first glimpse at its shortcomings, many companies started phasing out the use of this format in their offering.

E-education platforms are said to be among the ones under the most significant pressure. This is both due to the imminent need to have all their content transformed into a different format and the issue of intellectual property. Jeopardizing extensive content at online conversion services from Flash player to a safer format is not the perfect solution.

Where Does This Leave Online Gambling?

online-gambling-superstitionsOnline casinos and other gambling platforms using Flash to run their instant play sites are taking the hit in stride. Reputable operators are sure to have had the matter in hindsight even before the official end date.

It’s safe to say that players will be able to recognize efforts on their part. After all, Flash had its problems even before the ‘threat was imminent.’

Internet Browsers

Others, however, are yet to find a viable replacement for the Flash plug-in, which speaks somewhat to their dedication to keep up with industry standards. Bear in mind that Android and iOS have stopped using it since 2012, and the browsers mentioned above are phasing it out of use long before 2020. Flash ads have been blocked on Firefox, Chrome, and Edge since 2015.

What Does the Future Hold?

adobe crash

Warning screen for Flash player

There are still some issues and questions left unanswered with the Flash Player update. The following is a list of main topics to be discussed:

  • Security: The main problem of this plug-in was in its security since it had glitches enabling third party individuals to intrude and disrupt the product. As operators move forward with a suitable replacement solution, the question of security remains a top priority.
  • Intellectual Property: Many would suggest a simple conversion of the content by uploading it to online services. Here, the issue of intellectual property and seizure of rights to the material is bound to arise (common with PDF converters as well).
  • Accessibility: A tumultuous period is ahead for online gambling operators looking to maintain their content accessible over desktop and mobile platforms. All consumers, players, in particular, are strongly advised against accessing smaller companies with less ability to match the new market requirements.

All that can be done at the moment is to keep up with changes as they come and keep a lookout for likely reactions.

Webster Lupton

Webster Lupton Casino, Gambling, and Sports Journalist

Webster Lupton is a journalist and expert sports and casino writer with over 30 years of experience. Webster is a seasoned researcher and a published author. He also enjoys the outdoors and birdwatching.

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