8 Replies Latest reply on Aug 17, 2008 7:11 AM by Newsgroup_User

    Are big firms restricting Flash?

    universal_sprout
      I am pitching a flex site to a company run by an ex-trader. He used to work for a bank that would not let its employees run flash on their computers. Is this still the case? - I have been trying to find examples of this, but not finding any.

      I have found the adobe article about flash being on 99.0% of internet enabled PCs, but if those 1% of computers without flash include lots of computers at big firms, then that is quite an issue for people trying to sell high value products.

      From quick search round some sites that might be targeting bankers (mont blanc, calvin klein, etc) it seems that they all have flash content, but with html based alternatives - could this be because they all have in-house web teams that want to keep their jobs by making more work for themselves? or is there a significant audience out there with out flash on their computers.

      I have also found a few sites that use flash exclusively and clearly targeted at people with a bit of money to spend, if any one knows of more, then please post them to this list:

      http://www.sketch.uk.com/
      http://www.sketch.uk.com/
      http://www.sohohouse.com/ (not this url, but all the links to the locations bring up flash mini sites)
      http://www.nike.com/ (country selector in html, but main part of site in flash)
        • 1. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
          g-s-b Level 1
          Have you tried disabling your browser's flash plug-in and looking at those "flash" sites? ...you may well find that they have an HTML/DHTML solution as well.

          • 2. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
            universal_sprout Level 1
            I did try disabling flash, but I have found a difference between some of those sites that really seemed to fail as if javascript found flash, but couldn't get it to run. Most of the sites I have been looking at broke in some way if I turned off plug-ins and javascript. I am using Mac OS10.4 with Safari and flash player 9, I am guessing that doing lots of this might change on Windows and IE.

            I do think it is interesting that so many companies think it is worth paying for effectively two sites - a flash and an html one. If the html one did everything they wanted it to do, then why pay extra for the flash designers? - but then where are the statistics (and I mean real statistics - not hearsay) that there is this huge audience out there without flash?
            • 3. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
              Peter Lorent Level 2
              Big firms do not restrict usage of Flash but they tend to always use 'a version behind'. Which in the case of stepping up to Actionscript 3 is a major headache because they still run Flash Player 8.
              Whatever technology they will use for a project, depends on the target group. When they want to reach everyone on the globe, most likely they will demand the most basic. If it's a satellite project, targeted at people they expect to have Flash on their computers... or if the project/content demands video, animation, well obviously then they will need Flash. But remember that it is all about target groups, branding and not about technology.
              • 4. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
                universal_sprout Level 1
                I completely agree, but where are the statistics about deciding what your target audience has. If adobe is to be believed, then 99.0% of computers have flash, so who are these armies of people that don't have flash on their computers that require a non-flash alternative to be developed?

                If some of these big companies are developing a site where they expect most of the users to have flash installed, how do they decide that the users will have flash - hearsay? I find this a bit hard to believe.
                • 5. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
                  Peter Lorent Level 2
                  Well, I think that big companies were more 'convinced' when Adobe decided to buy the Flash technology than they are convinced by any statistics. I can only confirm that that fact boosted sales of Flash related projects. And the fact that other companies started using the technology is also a big influence.
                  Having a html backup, well that certainly was a thing a few years ago, but nowadays I only see html backup used when it's important to have searchable content and once Google can search in swf content too, that will cease to exist. Only in special circumstances you will see that happening.
                  And, there is the agency that develops the projects. Their advice also counts.
                  • 6. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
                    universal_sprout Level 1
                    Your point about Adobe buying flash is good, but only goes so far. At the moment I am one of those agencies trying to develop one of those projects (albeit on a small scale) and the only advice I can give to my client about if their target market has flash or not comes from hearsay, some market research commissioned by Adobe and my own research into which websites use flash.

                    I feel that flash developers (not flex) have a bad rap for designing sites that take forever to download and put form over function all the time (this is the other reason my potential client does not want to use flash). I can try to over come this point by showing some good examples of flash. However, the soho house sites (who are the only company I have found who have a similar target market to my client and do not have a flash alternative for large parts of their site) use quite a complicated interface that is not as intuitive as it could be. So it gives the impression that people that have flash only sites don't care about how easy their site is to use.

                    The apparent lack of research into which target markets have flash really contributes to the stereo-typical flash developer that just does some pretty animations without caring if they are useable or not.

                    I am convinced that flex is a great way to build interactive sites, but I can't just use techie arguments to convince clients.
                    • 7. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
                      Peter Lorent Level 2
                      Why a Flash website is as it is, is not a matter of some designer doing his trick, for bigger companies, that is. If in your case, the issue is usability of an application and with that an increase in revenues, you will find examples on the Adobe website that show how a RIA made the difference. That is what you should be selling instead of statistics or tech arguments.
                      • 8. Re: Are big firms restricting Flash?
                        Level 7

                        "universal sprout" <webforumsuser@macromedia.com> wrote in message
                        news:g88v83$lqt$1@forums.macromedia.com...
                        >I completely agree, but where are the statistics about deciding what your
                        > target audience has. If adobe is to be believed, then 99.0% of computers
                        > have
                        > flash, so who are these armies of people that don't have flash on their
                        > computers that require a non-flash alternative to be developed?

                        It might not be the technology, but just the irritation factor. I usually
                        avoid sites where all the content is accessible only through Flash since
                        such sites tend not to be very usable.