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Adobe advances Flash platform media delivery solutions

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At the 2010 Streaming Media East Conference, Adobe announced major new advancements to the Adobe Flash platform (http://www.adobe.com/go/flashaccess), the company’s design and development platform for creating and delivering content, video and applications that run across operating systems and devices.

Highlights include the immediate availability of Adobe Flash Access 2.0 software, a content protection solution that enables the distribution and monetization of premium video content, which can help create new sources of revenue for media publishers. In addition, Adobe is also showcasing HTTP Dynamic Streaming, a new protocol support for media streaming on the Flash Platform; and the Open Source Media Framework, to accelerate development of custom media players.

These powerful new Flash media delivery tools come in advance of the releases of Flash Player 10.1 and Adobe AIR 2, which are optimized for high performance on mobile screens and designed to take advantage of native device capabilities for a richer, more immersive user experience, says Doug Mack, vice president and general manager of Digital Imaging and Rich Media Solutions at Adobe.

Adobe today made available Adobe Flash Access 2.0, a scalable, flexible content protection solution that enables the distribution and monetization of premium video content. Mack says it provides a way to combine “the unprecedented reach and interactivity of the Adobe Flash Platform with robust security and flexible usage rules so that businesses can enforce necessary constraints, such as limiting viewing to a given rental period.”

Adobe Flash Access 2.0, previously known as Adobe Flash Media Rights Management Server, enables media publishers to monetize video content using a variety of business models, such as pay-per-view, electronic sell-through or advertising funded business models. New in this release, content protected with Flash Access 2.0 will play back securely online via Flash Player 10.1 software as well as Adobe AIR 2.0. Also new in Flash Access 2.0 is support for output protection, which can be used to protect content sent to external displays.

Building on the success of Adobe’s Flash Platform for the delivery of streaming content, Adobe’s new HTTP Dynamic Streaming leverages industry standards to provide content publishers, distributors and developers the tools they need to utilize HTTP infrastructures for high-quality media delivery in Flash Player 10.1 and AIR 2. While Flash Media Server 3.5 remains the choice for delivering interactive media experiences over RTMP (Real Time Message Protocol) with features like new trick modes, smart caching technology, protection and real time communication, customers will now have the flexibility to use HTTP Dynamic streaming which enables the use of existing network infrastructures and standard Web server hardware to deliver rich media experiences on a massive scale, says Mack.

HTTP Dynamic Streaming includes integration of content protection powered by Flash Access 2.0, allowing publishers to encrypt and apply business rules to their premium video content for both live and Video on Demand (VOD). HTTP Dynamic Streaming supports all of the media codecs supported by the Flash Platform today, including H.264 and VP6.

Rounding out Adobe’s media delivery solution for the Flash Platform, the Open Source Media Framework (OSMF) is an open framework for building custom media players. Mack says the new framework will help establish an industry standard for media players and will offer production-ready components to help streamline the development process, reducing the time content publishers spend creating and integrating playback technologies.

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