Adobe's decision to no longer support Flash on mobile devices, i.e. Android, had a big effect on websites and apps that relied on the technology for video. While Adobe announced that it would no longer update the plugin, Flash Player was still available for Android devices that could run it up until last month.
But as the rollout of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean began, Flash was pulled out of the Google Play Store since it hadn't been tested with the new operating system.
What was surprising though was that the player was put back up in the UK
on a temporary basis. At the time, the speculation was that the move was done in order to support BBC's iPlayer, which used Flash.
Thankfully, that's no longer necessary as the BBC has a brand new player. Which uses Flash. Well, technically, it uses AIR, which is still supported on mobile. The new app should be landing next week.
It means that the BBC can keep its Flash player and streaming technologies, which means shows will stream on any Android device, but it also means that the BBC now uses a dedicated app, aka the BBC Media Player for all the streaming.
Basically, people visiting the mobile site to check out a show will have to grab the app to do it. The BBC said this was the only simple way of ensuring that the videos worked for everyone with minimum impact and, presumably, investment.
It is strange though that the BBC didn't opt for a more modern approach like HTML5 video which is supported by any Android device as well as any iOS device.
"This approach allows us to focus on solving all of our media playback challenges in one place and in one app. Any improvements that we make will benefit everything in the BBC that uses the Android platform," the BBC explained
"We are making this change with our eyes open. No technology is perfect. We've seen some of the challenges that other Adobe Air based apps have had in the marketplace and so we have worked hard, both internally and with our technology partners to build the best application we can," it said.