Monday, 29 October 2012

Why doesn't the Internet Explorer app for Windows 8 support Flash Player and how can I embed my youtube videos?

In this short video, I am going to discuss why the Internet Explorer app for Windows 8 does not display content that requires the Flash player. And what this means for the consumer and content provider alike.

You can read the transcript below.

HTML5 player


So how many of you have recently browsed to a site such as my blog using the new Internet Explorer app on Windows 8?

You will have noticed that it doesn't render certain content types. For example, Flash player.

This is a feature. And I don't mean that as a euphemism for "bug".

Microsoft have deliberately kept the Internet Explorer app plug-in free. Relying instead on HTML5.

There are two consequences to this.

Firstly as a consumer, should you browse to a page that requires the Flash player using the Internet Explorer app, you have the option to right-click the page to activate the Windows 8 App bar.

If you click on the Page tools icon, you will have the option to View the page on the Desktop.

This will launch Internet Explorer 10 and navigate you to the same page.

This is not ideal but it is what it is.

I should point out that the Internet Explorer app and Internet Explorer 10 are different programs with different capabilities.

Of course you don't have to use the Internet Explorer app and could always use Internet Explorer 10, Firefox or Chrome anyway.

The second consequence of this feature is for those providing the content.

If you are producing content for the web and suspect that a growing number of your users are likely to use the Internet Explorer app or another program that favours HTML5, you had better start embracing HTML5 yourself.

In the case of my embedded YouTube videos, this couldn't be simpler.

When clicking the Share link in YouTube, you are given a number of Embed options including the dimensions.

If you select the Use the old embed code option, this will provide you with mark up that requires the Flash player to be installed.

However, if you uncheck this box, then HTML5 compatible mark up will be generated.

It is this code that the Internet Explorer app can use. Not to mention any other browser that supports HTML5.

I suppose you might still have to worry about an audience who don't currently use an HTML5 compatible browser.

One option might be to provide one of each.

In fact. I often embed videos twice in my posts. One at the top and another at the bottom.

From now on, I'll make sure that one of them uses HTML5 and the other, Flash.

Flash player

See you soon

Phil Stirpé
"I don't do average!"

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