If you are responsible for e-learning courses that contain Flash, you will - we hope – be aware of the need to plan what to do with those courses. As is widely known, Adobe will cease the support of Flash Player by the end of 2020 and the main browsers are restricting the use of Flash Player long before then*. So, if those courses will continue to be needed, the SWF- content will have to be converted to HTML5 format. How complex and expensive that work will be, depends on several aspects, such as:
a) What is the type and quantity of the SWF-content?
b) On what types of devices do you expect the courses to be used?
c) With what authoring tool(s) was it created?
d) To what extent does it need to be modernised anyway?
e) In what LMS will it be integrated?
Whilst the phase-out of Flash Player could turn out to be a considerable challenge for some organisations, it is also an opportunity to review:
a) The effectiveness of your existing e-learning materials and how they could/should be improved
b) Whether production of e-learning courses should in future be carried out more in-house or externally than in the past
c) Whether there are more appropriate authoring tools than those that have been used in the past and what a switch to a more appropriate one would entail
There is no simple answer to identify the best way to proceed. Each individual set of circumstances and objectives needs to be assessed on its own merits. That is where Sapiram can help. We work in close partnership with Lieve Weymeis (aka Lilybiri), one of the most renowned experts of what is considered by many as the world’s leading authoring tool for e-learning courses, Adobe Captivate. In Adobe's "Wall of Fame", she is the only “Legend” that specialises in Captivate (https://forums.adobe.com/community/walloffame/legends). She is not only a technical expert, but also a great teacher and trainer – a rare combination!
If you would like to discuss how Sapiram could help you deal with SWF-based content or more generally with the integration of e-learning into your training, please send us a message via our Contact Form.
* Here is some additional information on the planned phase-out of Flash Player in browsers:
Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer
As of 14/1/19 the statements of the Microsoft Edge Team on a relevant Microsoft blog post (https://blogs.windows.com/msedgedev/2017/07/25/flash-on-windows-timeline/) were:
“In mid to late 2019, we will disable Flash by default in both Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer. Users will be able to re-enable Flash in both browsers. When re-enabled, Microsoft Edge will continue to require approval for Flash on a site-by-site basis.
By the end of 2020, we will remove the ability to run Adobe Flash in Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer across all supported versions of Microsoft Windows. Users will no longer have any ability to enable or run Flash.”
According to Mozilla’s roadmap for Firefox (https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Plugins/Roadmap) as of 14.1.19, “Firefox will disable the Flash plugin by default. Users will not be prompted to enable Flash, but it will still be possible to activate Flash on certain sites using browser settings.”
The roadmap (https://www.chromium.org/flash-roadmap) states that Flash will be disabled by default from July 2019.
The iPhone, iPad and iPod touch never supported Flash. On the Mac, Flash has not been pre-installed since 2010, but it can - at least at present in January 2019 - still be run on a Mac, if it is downloaded and installed. (https://webkit.org/blog/7839/adobe-announces-flash-distribution-and-updates-to-end/).