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Adobe Flash renamed Adobe Animate

  • Published on December 2, 2015
Adobe Flash renamed Adobe Animate

Adobe is hoping that a new name for Adobe Flash will help clear its heavily tarnished name and reputation as Adobe Flash becomes Adobe Animate early next year. With this change it is worth looking at why Adobe changed the name of Flash to Animate and what the future holds for Adobe Animate.

Adobe Flash History before Adobe Animate

During the initial years of the Word Wide Web, animations and interactivity were often created by designers using the Flash application. Using a free Flash plug-in for web browsers, this interactivity could be viewed on both Mac and Windows computers. As the Flash plug-in became more widespread, the Flash file format eventually expanded to also include video. At one point YouTube shared the majority of their videos in the Flash format, and most display advertisements across the web used the Flash file format. During this time, Flash courses were among the most popular of all Adobe training classes, with many people wanting to learn to create web animations.

Adobe acquired Macromedia, and attempted to expand the Flash format across computers. They used the Flash file format as the foundation for a video conferencing service, and as the basis for web applications they called RIAs or Rich Internet Applications.

When and Why Flash Became so Hated

In 2010 Apple criticized Adobe Flash as a program that was unstable that also quickly drained battery life from mobile phones. For this reason, Apple declined to include support for Flash in any iPhone or iPad. To allow this group to receive ads, Google started to deliver ads as HTML5, and on their YouTube service also started to deliver videos using HTML5. Around the same time, web security professionals started to see an increase in risks associated with the Flash browser plug-in. In some cases, the Flash plug-in could be used by a criminal to completely control another computer, or to turn on a web cam without the user knowing they are being watched. With all these problems associated with Flash, many browsers started blocking Flash content completely in order to safeguard their users. Additionally, web advertisers have moved to the HTML5 format for distributing web ads.

What is changing as Flash is renamed Adobe Animate

Adobe has been attempting to keep the Flash application and file format relevant. With this change, Adobe is admitting that Flash is dead as a file format, but they are trying to keep the application that creates Flash as a viable tool. With the Flash format on the way out, and the name Flash carrying a terrible reputation, Adobe hopes that it can salvage the tool under a new name. The renamed Adobe Animate app will still create Flash format files, but also can be used to create more modern HTML5 animations. American Graphics Institute’s Flash courses will become Adobe Animate classes to reflect the new product name and will include any new tools and functions added to Animate once it is released.

Using Adobe Animate for Advertisements

Creating web advertisements that comply with newer HTML5 advertisement standards will still be possible with Adobe Animate. The app will support the creation of animations and interactivity using HTML5 and CSS3.

What happens to Adobe Edge Animate

Adobe has not been clear as to the direction of Edge Animate after Adobe Animate is released. It is likely that many of the features of Edge Animate may be incorporated into the new Adobe Animate application once the Flash name is removed.


About the author

Christopher Smith is president of American Graphics Institute in Boston, Massachusetts. He is the publisher and editor of the Digital Classroom book series, which have sold more than one million copies. At American Graphics Institute, he provides strategic technology consulting to marketing professionals, publishers and to large technology companies including Google, Apple, Microsoft, and HP. An expert on web analytics and digital marketing, he delivers Google Analytics training along with workshops on digital marketing topics. He is also the author of more than 10 books on electronic publishing tools and technologies, including the Adobe Creative Cloud for Dummies. Christopher did his undergraduate studies the at the University of Minnesota, and then worked for Quark, Inc. prior to joining American Graphics Institute where he has worked for 20 years.