No more installing Flash — it’ll be pre-installed.
Despite claiming HTML5 was the future of web browsing, Microsoft is integrating Flash into Metro
When I think of Metro, I think of a fast and fluid operating system that performs equally well across a range of hardware. When I think of Flash, I think of software that hogs the operating system. Despite that feeling (and I’m not alone, I’m sure) Microsoft is integrating the latter into Internet Explorer 10.
The news came from a forum post on WinUnleaked.tk, who are consistently posting information about Microsoft’s upcoming operating system from build number to features. We have no reason to doubt this; therefore, the news seems not bogus especially because Internet Explorer doesn’t support installing software through add-ons.
However, Microsoft has openly talked about how Metro Internet Explorer 10 removes all the distractions and focuses on the user experience. It should be noted that Microsoft has previously said Flash is an important part of the Internet, despite security and performance issues. So it’s not like Microsoft has said they would never use Flash, like Apple.
Flash for select websites, good performance, battery life
Microsoft maintaining good levels of performance as Adobe has given it source code, means Microsoft can directly integrate the software into the browser. The company can therefore test the software, and make sure it meets all the criteria. It’s the kind of attention to detail companies like Apple would use, and it’s a welcome move.
Flash won’t be available for all websites, only those that need it. And to be honest, with websites now adopting mobile formats to support mobile devices and the iPad HTML5 is becoming popular. Microsoft has also updated the Internet Explorer Compatibility View to include Flash. It will allow legacy websites that use Flash to be supported.
It’ll be interesting to see how this impacts the desktop half of Windows 8, which the leak remained quiet on. Considering that’s the more regular Windows experience, it may offer more regular support for programs such as Flash.
The Verge’s sources corroborate the news, saying the support for Flash despite saying otherwise is because HTML5 content isn’t ready. The changes are also said to be the Release Preview, releasing in the first week of June.