Radiant Media Player

Deprecating Flash support

Deprecating Flash support in Radiant Media Player 4

Radiant Media Player has always been an HTML5-first web media player. When we started development of Radiant Media Player in late 2014 it made sense to add an advanced Flash fallback providing a unified API between HTML5 & Flash. As Flash becomes widely deprecated in the industry we will progressively phase out Flash of our player. This is a good thing - do not be afraid.

On an advertisement point of view on January 4, 2017 Google announced the end of Flash support in the IMA SDK by June 1, 2017. They leave this note:

We strongly encourage all publishers still using the Flash SDK to migrate to the HTML5 SDK. We also strongly encourage advertisers still trafficking Flash VPAID ads to migrate those ads to JavaScript VPAID.

Over the past few months we have seen a significant drop in Flash usage by Radiant Media Player customers. In Q4 2016 Flash only represented 10% of the traffic we saw through our player - we expect this to rapidly fall under 5% within the first six months of 2017. Flash-based ads are generating less and less revenue as modern browsers actively block Flash and opting out of them seems to now be the right choice.

Following Google leads Radiant Media Player 4 will gradually stop supporting Flash with the below schedule:

  • On February 20, 2017 Radiant Media Player 4 is released. Flash fallback support will be limited to a HLS to Flash fallback for legacy desktop browsers. Serving ads in our Flash fallback will not be supported anymore. Flash VPAID ads will still render in our HTML5 player until June 1, 2017.
  • On June 1, 2017 Flash VPAID ads will stop working in our HTML5 player. Radiant Media Player Flash fallback will still be available but we will stop all development for Flash and support will not be guaranteed anymore.
  • When Microsoft stops supporting Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 7 we will completely remove Flash from Radiant Media Player.

Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

With the release of Radiant Media Player 4 we have compiled a lightweight and robust Flash fallback to best fit Flash end-of-life cycle. This is mainly provided to support HLS streaming with legacy Desktop browsers like Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 7 and versions of Firefox before 42 (those browsers do not support Media Source Extensions or native HLS streaming).

The bottom line is that we consider it is acceptable and reasonable to provide a lesser user experience, while still being able to access the media content, to those legacy browsers following the graceful degradation doctrine. For HLS on-demand video streaming we recommend to provide a MP4 progressive download fallback to the player so as to completely avoid the use of Flash.

Supported features with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

  • HLS to Flash fallback for live, DVR and on-demand video. MP4 progressive download to Flash is not supported any more.
  • AES-128 decryption
  • Automatic adaptive bitrate streaming. Manual bitrate switching in Flash is not supported any more.
  • Error resilience: retry mechanism on I/O errors, recovery mechanism on badly segmented TS streams, failover on alternate redundant streams

Supported HLS M3U8 tags with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

  • #EXTM3U
  • #EXT-X-STREAM-INF (Multiple bitrate)
  • #EXT-X-ENDLIST (VoD / Live playlist)
  • #EXT-X-KEY (AES-128 method supported only)

Supported player API method/events with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

  • getReady method
  • getPlayerVersion method
  • getPlayerMode method
  • getStreamType method
  • getTimeReady method
  • resize method
  • getPlayerWidth method
  • getPlayerHeight method
  • setPlayerSize method
  • getSrc method
  • getContentID method
  • setContentID method
  • getMute method
  • getContentTitle method
  • getContentDescription method
  • getPoster method
  • destroy method
  • ready event

All other player methods and events are not available with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback. Refer to our player API documentation for details about the above API methods/events.

Supported player skins with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

Only one skin is provided for Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback. It cannot be customised.

Available player settings for Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

  • hideControls
  • initialVolume
  • hideCentralPlayButton
  • delayToFade
  • scaleMode
  • poster
  • endOfVideoPoster
  • posterScaleMode
  • autoplay
  • muted

Refer to our general player settings docs for details about the above settings.

The following settings only apply to Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback:

  • flashFallBack: Boolean - enable or disable flash fallback - default: true
  • flashWMode: String - set Flash Window Mode, possible values are 'window', 'direct', 'opaque', 'transparent', 'gpu' - default: 'direct'
  • flashHlsMinbufferlength: Number - minimum buffer length in seconds that needs to be reached before playback can start (after seeking) or restart (in case of empty buffer). If set to -1 some heuristics based on past metrics are used to define an accurate value that should prevent buffer to stall - default: -1
  • flashHlsLowbufferlength: Number - low buffer threshold in seconds. When crossing down this threshold, HLS will switch to buffering state, usually the player will report this buffering state through a buffering statement. Playback may still continue - default: 3
  • flashHlsMaxbufferlength: Number - maximum buffer length in seconds. The player will try to never exceed this value for its buffer - default: 60
  • flashHlsCapLevelToStage: Boolean - this setting limits bitrates usable in auto-quality by the stage dimensions (width and height) - default: false
  • flashHlsCaplevelonfpsdrop: Boolean - this setting causes an automatic level switch down when frame rate loss is considered too high by player - default: true
  • flashHlsStartFromLevel: Number - from 0 to 1, indicates the preferred initial bitrate - default: -1
    • 0 means lowest non-audio bitrate is used
    • 1 means highest bitrate is used
    • 0.5 means the closest to the middle bitrate will be selected and used first
    • -1 means automatic start level selection, playback will start from level matching download bandwidth (determined from download of first segment)
    • -2 means playback will start from the first level appearing in Manifest (regardless of its bitrate)
  • flashHlsAutoStartMaxDuration: Number - max fragment loading duration (bandwidth test + fragment loading) in automatic start level selection mode (in milliseconds) - default: -1
    • -1 means max duration is not capped
    • greater than 0 means max duration is capped to the given value. This will avoid long playback starting time. basically if set to 2000ms, and download bandwidth test took 1500ms, we only have 500ms left to load the proper fragment ... which is not enough ... this means that the player will stick to level 0 in that case, even if download bandwidth would be enough to select a higher bitrate

Unsupported features with Radiant Media Player 4 Flash fallback

If you have a business requirement to support one of this feature in Flash you can still use Radiant Media Player 3 - however we do not recommend it.

  • Multi-audio trakcs
  • WebVTT captions
  • Video ads
  • Flash DRM
  • audio-only
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