Pandora Drops Flash for HTML 5

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Internet streaming music service Pandora announced on Tuesday that it is phasing out Flash in favor of HTML 5. The change means users won’t have to rely on the Flash plug-in in their Web browser to listen to the service’s music offerings, and the company claims switching to HTML 5 has improved overall performance, too.

“The front-end technology has been rebuilt in HTML 5 and together with a host of other improvements results in a much faster experience,” the Pandora Web site stated.

Pandora Ditches Flash for HTML 5Pandora is dumping Flash for HTML 5

The HTML 5 version of Pandora includes a redesigned user interface, more robust search options, quick access to playback controls, one-click access to details about the current track, social interaction features, and more.

Pandora’s move away from Flash is likely a disappointment to Adobe since the company continues to push the multimedia format as a critical component in viewing and listening to content on the Internet. The move away from Adobe’s technology, however, is slowly gaining momentum.

Pandora will be transitioning users to the HTML 5 version of its service in phases starting today.

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Where’s Wally? Sorry I meant Bosco.

I was expecting an immediate response/rant/diatribe from him defending Flash.


Somebody should start a death knell counter for Flash. It actually started down the path of a slow death by a million small cuts, quite some time ago. It won’t be dead any time soon, but it is definitely bleeding relevance at a growing rate.


There will be a whole new meaning to gone in a flash!


@furbies: No. Bosco tends to have a problem with what he perceives to be Apple’s many faults, those that ‘blindly’ defend those faults and those that he believes follow Apple like sheep. I don’t think he cares much about a third party company’s choice to use a newer, arguably superior technology and abandon Flash. However, I could see him writing about how this is the result of Jobs/Apple manipulating the industry to promote ‘HTML5’ (which really is more than just HTML5).


With HTML 5 now being well supported in every modern browser, now’s the time for many to begin making the switch from Flash to HTML 5.


Err, no. What they’re doing is moving the *frontend* part of it from a single interface (in flash) to a social website (in HTML5). Especial focus on the word *frontend*: playback will still be in Flash since HTML5 just can’t do it right (that’s what even the new Grooveshark uses). Sorry, Flash haters.


In order to play any music you still need Adobe Flash.

Pandora simply removed the flash content from their site, and now are building it in html. But the application and methods for delivering you the songs has not changed. You need flash.



I love it!

When Pandora was on Flash, over time, my Mac would overheat. I think there is a memory leak in Flash that causes it to use of available CPU time when NOTHING was playing.

Now, there will be no more overheating.



what format did they choose?



There is still a place for Flash on the Web as it will be a long time for HTML 5 comes close to doing everything that Flash can do today.  I’m talking large application-type stuff.  But streaming music is certainly not one of them.  Kudos for Pandora making the great leap forward.

@MOSiX Man If this story was about a popular Web site that declared that they were sticking with Flash because HTML 5 didn’t do what they needed, you can bet that Bosco would be here rubbing it in our faces.  You give the guy too much credit, he’s only here because he gets his kicks from Apple bashing.


This makes perfect sense. If your frontend does not need advanced animation abilities (at a reasonable development cost) and your focusing on only the most recent browsers then html5 tech is the way to go. On the other hand if you don’t want to deal with multiple media codecs, want to do advanced UX/UI design, at a low cost of entry, don’t want to deal with endless if/else javascript statements to work around browser fracturing, and you need some kind of drm because the music labels demand it then you need flash.

“When Pandora was on Flash, over time, my Mac would overheat. I think there is a memory leak in Flash that causes it to use of available CPU time when NOTHING was playing.”

Why do you think that if there is a memory leak in the code that Pandora wrote in flash that they could not write that memory leak in Javascript? Many seem to think that bad coding only occurs in Actionscript. I could write an infinite loop in java, javascript, and objC that would toast your mac’s cpu and memory. If your having an issue then you should be telling Pandora to look at their coding. I have had it up for entire days on my MBP and no issues at all.


You still need flash to actually play the music.

Pandora was using flash as part of their site layout. That is the only Flash that is being removed.

In order to play music on Pandora you will still need Flash, you just dont need flash for the rest of the site anymore.



Actually, HTML5 can indeed play music without Flash. Heck, it can even play video as evidenced by going to and enabling it. At least for audio and video, Flash is irrelevant in the newest HTML protocol.


interestingly enough, it’s now almost 4 1/2 years later and Pandora still requires Flash to be installed.
I don’t have it installed on this computer, and here’s the message I receive: In order to use Pandora internet radio, please install Adobe Flash (v.10 or later).

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