The latest Flash Player 15 beta builds are now available. Beta builds can be downloaded from labs.adobe.com.
New Features for Flash Player 15:
- Relaxing Stage3D Render Target Clear
In previous versions of Stage3D, after switching the render texture through Context3D::setRenderToTexture, you were required to clear it before drawing. In this release, we're removing this limitation and optimizing the use of render textures. This change will allow you to further optimize and reuse depth and stencil buffers between different render textures. For additional information, please see Relaxing Render Target Clear Operation in Stage 3D.
- Improved support for browser zoom levels - Windows 8
Flash Player now has improved support for browser zoom factors other than 100% on Internet Explorer on Windows 8.x. Devices, like the Microsoft Surface tablets, default to a zoom level of 150%. In the past, this could cause problems with Flash Player and some 3D content. With our new implementation, we can now scale the content and 3D buffers to keep everything aligned. In addition, Flash Player introduces an option to render to an increased Stage3D back buffer, rather than scaling, on browser zoom to keep the resolution of the rendered content high. This option allows to the stage3D buffer to change in size in synch with the change in the browser zoom factor. Developers are notified of this change with a new ZOOM_FACTOR_CHANGE event.
- Flash Player Fullscreen Orientation Change - Windows
Flash Player will now detect and appropriately scale your content to fit best in a fullscreen display when your device orientation is changed. This change is specific to Windows and is implemented across all browsers. We're focusing on providing the best tablet experience possible. A resize event will fire when in fullscreen mode and the device orientation changes. Developers, if your content does not resize, you will need to handle the resize event appropriately. For additional details, please see the Guide for Supporting Screen Orientation with Full-Screen Flash Player Content.
- Hardware video decoding on Chrome (PPAPI) for Windows
We're pleased to announce that hardware video decoding is now enabled by default for Chrome users on Windows. This feature will drastically reduce the CPU usage and improve performance on supported videos players. We're working closely with Google to bring this feature to OS X and will provide additional details when available.
- Automatic software fall back with StageVideo
Flash Player 15 now supports a Software version of StageVideo that provides an automatic failover to the software version when hardware StageVideo is not available. To leverage this automatic failover, the swf apps need to be compiled for Flash Player 15 and above.
When the swfs are compiled for Flash Player 15 and above, and when hardware StageVideo is unavailable, the app will get a StageVideoAvailability event as earlier, but instead of being "Unavailable" it will ALWAYS be "available", and the reason will always be "noError". The app will no longer need to implement a Video object failover as the failover is automatic inside flash player. The apps can still choose to use Video object instead of StageVIdeo if needed.
Hardware StageVideo availability is dependent on a number of factors, including:
Browser hardware rendering support: If available, all wMode based apps will support hardware StageVideo. If not available, wMode=direct based apps will be the only ones that will support hardware StageVideo, unless there are other exceptions, like the ones mentioned below.
IE11: IE has an accelerated pipeline and the FlashPlayer is HW accelerated in all wmode, so StageVideo should always be available. Note that the decision to use the HW accelerate rendering pipeline reside in IE.
Firefox: There is currently no HW accelerated pipeline available in Firefox on windows and only wMode direct will have StageVideo available all other wMode should generate a unavailable event.
Chrome: Pepper has HW acceleration in all wMode, but some restrictions apply. For example Chrome will refuse to use HW acceleration on Windows XP and it has its own driver blacklisting mechanism. It is also possible for the user to disable the HW acceleration in the settings panel. Chrome exposes a somewhat useful page to allow one to see the status of its gpu acceleration: chrome://gpu/
Safari: All wMode should expose StageVideo
Firefox: All wModes should expose StageVideo
Chrome: All wMode should expose StageVideo, with the same limitations as the windows version.
Driver version: Certain older drivers may not support hardware StageVideo
User settings: If a user turns off hardware acceleration, then hardware StageVideo will not be available
Full Screen: Hardware StageVIdeo is always available in Full Screen mode.
When the hardware StageVideo fails because of browser support, wMode, driver version or user settings, starting with Flash Player 15, SW StageVideo will be used automatically without needing any configuration or code in the app.
- PPAPI Installers for Windows and Mac - Extended Beta
We're pleased to announce that we now have PPAPI installers for the standard version of Flash Player for Windows and Mac. Previously, this version of the Player was available only as an integrated component of Google Chrome. With the introduction of these installers, Flash Player is now available for all Chromium based browsers using the PPAPI interface. Please note that these installers are not required nor used by Google Chrome. Chrome will continue to include Flash Player without requiring any additional installation.
Both the standard and content debugging versions of the PPAPI installers are now available on http://labs.adobe.com.
This build brings the beta channel inline with our official release yesterday. Hardware Video Decoding is now on by default for Chrome users. If you experience playback or stability problems when watching Flash-based video, please report them to the Beta forums. Including the output of the DirectX Diagnostic Tool (dxdiag) would be especially helpful.
- Corrects an issue injected in Flash Player 188.8.131.52 where some Windows network paths starting with "\\<pc_name>\<folder_name>\..." were not resolving. (3807009)
- Corrects an issue with Adobe Access where a small number of Internet Explorer users were experiencing issues establishing protected content streams (3788872)
- [External] [Flash OCX] Network folder trouble. (3817063)
- Multiple Stability and Security Fixes
About the Beta Channel
Beta Versions of Flash Player are available for automatic installation via our Background Update service. Please subscribe to automatically install or receive update availability notifications at runtime.