Flash Player 10.1 Adds Hardware Acceleration Support [Updated]

| Product News

Adobe released Flash Player 10.1 for Mac OS X late Thursday with hardware-based video and rendering support and HTTP Dynamic Streaming support.

The update takes advantage of Mac OS X’s OpenGL feature for better full screen playback, along with Core Animation for improved rendering performance. According to Paul Betlem from Adobe’s Flash team, “For Macs running OS X 10.6 or greater, we leverage the hardware acceleration in Core Animation to dramatically improve the efficiency of displaying web pages which combine both SWF and HTML content.”

He added “The overall performance improvements of Flash Player for Mac users will result in faster video playback, more efficient CPU utilization, and greater battery life.”

Version 10.1 also added a Privacy Mode that honors Web browser privacy settings and doesn’t cache Web page content, peer-assisted multicast support, and two-finger tap, scroll, pinch, scale and rotate multi-touch support.

Hardware-based acceleration for H.264 content is promised in a future update for Flash Player 10.1, but Mac users willing to risk stability issues can check out a preview at the Adobe Labs Web site.

Flash Player 10.1 is available as a free download at the Adobe Web site.

[This article has been updated with additional information about Flash Player 10.1]

Popular TMO Stories



10.1 for the mac does not add h.264 hardware acceleration.  Even though it was available in the beta, it is not in 10.1.  Adobe said they would at it later.

Mark Hernandez

Jeff, do your homework.  Also, in the title you refer to “Flash Player” and in the article body you refer to the “multimedia tool.”  Those are two different Adobe products.  I had to think for a second which one you were talking about.  I shouldn’t have to do that.  Take 3 extra minutes and take care in your writing.  Thanks.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Thanks for an informative article, Jeff. The consensus around here is that TMO is the still the first place to go for Mac news. There are other places to dive in deeper, but some of us are too busy criticizing everyone in our efforts to find deep collaborative meaning to go elsewhere.


ahem… if you go to the Adobe webiste, and read the system requirements, it’s pretty clear that the H.264 hardware support is for the Windows version only.

Aside from the fact that 10.1 exists, there’s pretty much nothing in it of interest to mac-users, IMHO.

This article is either poorly researched, or down-right deceptive.


lifted from systems requirements on Mac OSX version…

Video hardware acceleration support
Flash Player 10.1 supports hardware decoding of H.264 video on Windows platforms when running with supported hardware and drivers.


3. Intel Hardware video decoding of H.264 content in Flash Player 10.1 is supported on Intel? 4 Series Chipset family and the all New 2010 Intel? Core? Processor Family with Intel? HD Graphics starting with the graphics driver version for 32/64-bit Windows Vista and Windows 7.

Again… the body of the article intimates that H.264 hardware acceleration has come to the Mac OSX version. This is not true.

Jeff Gamet

Sorry for the confusion, gang. The article has been updated to show that H.264 hardware acceleration for the Mac is still on the way, and thanks for keeping me on my toes.

Pashtun Wally

THE BEST THING I ever did for my overall computing experience was install Click-to-Flash.  All browsers are faster and more stable, and general system responsiveness is way up.

And I’m supposed to want the “new and improved” Flash?

Flash is not a ‘must-have’ feature - it’s a ‘must-avoid’ pothole.  Hitting it faster would not be an improvement

Constable Odo

ClickToFlash is the way to go.  Thanks Adobe for continually making Mac users second-class citizens.  And then you wonder why Apple doesn’t want your Flash on iOS.  You’ll shaft iOS users in the same fashion as you shaft OSX users.

Lee Dronick

After installing this update, assuming that you will, check your Flash privacy settings.



i have updated to 10.1 and it actually uses more cpu usage then before. not sure if this is an isolated incident i haven’t read that any one else is see this issue


Here’s a thing. I got an automatic Mac OS Security Update notification recently so I downloaded and installed the update. Later I read that the Update from Apple installed an older version of Flash Player and that I should install FP 10.1 - so I uninstalled the old Flash Player, installed the very latest 10.1 version.
However, now I find that videos on sites using Flash to play them don’t display the video picture, but they do play the audio. Menu items on Flash panels (even on Adobe’s Flash Player Settings page!) are missing their text as are buttons too - and tooltips and time indicators made in Flash are blank even on fullscreen YouTube vids. Take my fav site ted.com for example. I can’t access video, or information about the video, But I can hear it though. What’s that about? Anyone else have this problem?


I have the exact same problem that Flinty is experiencing. In my case, I have a late 2008 Mac Pro, with an upgraded ATI Radeon HD 4870 video card. I realize this card isn’t supported for HW acceleration, but I expected it to at least display in unaccelerated mode. Adobe FTL

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account