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The Future of Flash Games: The Debates Rage Onward

Because Apple is becoming more strict with the use of Flash, many people wonder if the company will still continue to support the ongoing use of Flash for its devices. Although there seems to be much debate about the topic, here are 4 important factors to consider about Flash’s staying power:


1. More people play games now than ever before.


It is astounding to know that people from all over the world spend about 3 billion hours per week playing games (whether casually or seriously). In the United States alone, 98 million Americans partake in casual/social gaming. With so much emphasis on gaming, the industry has become twice as large as the music industry.


2. Many platforms are equipped with Flash.


About 1.3 billion computers have Flash installed, which is five times the number of Playstation, Wii, and Xbox units combined. Although there is some concern over the integration of Flash with iOS devices, it should be known that many Apple and Android products (about 500 million) can still have Flash games installed by purchasing apps from stores. In fact, if companies did not allow for the use of Flash on their devices, they would lose a lot of money.


The most popular games on Facebook at the moment make use of Flash technology. In fact, 2 million people play Zombie-Jombie, which is a game powered using a combination of HTML5 and Adobe Phonegap build. Additionally, in 2012, the most successful Facebook game, Songpop, is powered by Flash for Android and iOS devices.


3. The gaming industry makes tremendous money.


There is no doubt that the gaming industry makes a staggering amount of money per year, and the figures only seem to be rising as more and more people become involved. For example, in 2012, the Kabam social game revenue was $180 million. Additionally, there are 9 Chinese games using Flash technology that generates a monthly revenue of $70 million.


Judging by the revenue alone earned on Flash games, it does not seem like Flash will become obsolete any time soon.


4. Apple is striving to make apps and browsers using Flash safer.


Unfortunately, Flash, like Java, is a popular platform that harmful individuals or groups like to attack. Because of this, it is essential to do regularly updates to correct any security flaws that can leave users at risk.


To help keep users safe, Apple has been stricter with what version of Flash you can have with the Safari browser. For OS X users, an automatic update was issued in February via Xprotect to lock outdated Flash player plugins for Safari.


Even now, if Apple thinks that you had enough time to update Flash, it will issue a new Xprotect signature to basically force you to actually update. Although it can be annoying, the practice is meant to protect Mac (and sometimes even Windows) users from various kinds of security threats.


Despite concerns revolving around the use of Flash technology, it does not seem to be going away any time soon. In fact, it is very likely that the trend will remain steady over the next two or three years, at the very least.


Luke Harper is a former Flash developer who also enjoys playing multiplayer games online. A passionate writer, he enjoys educating others by posting on various Internet blogs. To see the latest in Flash games, visit