Today, YouTube announced that its Web video player will now default to HTML5 over Adobe Flash to add more flexibility for developers, bloggers and consumers.
The team wrote that it waited on switching to HTML5 players due to numerous technical issues. For example, HTML5 previously lacked support for Adaptive Bitrate (ABR), which helps reduce buffering.
With ABR support, YouTube says it is able to use MediaSource Extensions to run smooth live streams on a variety of devices, including the Xbox One, Playstation 4, Chromecast and most popular Web browsers such as Chrome, Safari 8 and IE 11.
YouTube also says that since HTML5 supports VP9 codec, it can help save bandwidth, load time and file size. The team encourages developers to start using the iframe API rather than Flash so mobile devices that do not support Flash can easily stream YouTube videos.
YouTube has offered HTML5 functionality for many years now, so it seems overdue for the company to finally make this the standard platform.