In a recent article for Streaming Media Magazine, “Who Still Uses Flash Video? Just About Everybody,” Jan Ozer of StreamingLearningCenter does a little digging and finds that Flash is still alive and well when it comes to online video delivery.
Looking at the comments on the article, this fact apparently touched on a nerve for many. While some argued that he was looking only with a specific browser with Flash installed, the fact remained that almost all of the sites in his informal survey used a Flash-first approach. Of course, these sites had to have an option for HTML5 video delivery if they wanted to reach non-Flash devices, so the HTML5 players exist, but they are not the first choice for top video sites such as the major networks, top user generated video sites, sports, and online training sites.
This is pretty much what I have been saying all along… Flash will be useful for video for some time to come. It’s still ubiquitous for the vast majority of your viewers, and gives you more robust features than HTML5 (content protection, adaptive bitrates, overlays and acceleration via stage video, and more). So the bottom line for developers: get proficient in HTML5 video, yes, but you can’t leave Flash behind just yet (even if you might want to).