If you saw bits of this year’s MAX conference, chances are you’ve heard of Stage Video. This is a new Flash API that uses the GPU for rendering the video on the screen. Thus, using this feature you get hardware acceleration for both decoding H264 videos and displaying them on the screen.
You can play with this new feature starting today (I wrote an article explaining this new API). The Flash Player 10.2 beta is available on Adobe Labs for desktop. In order to benefit from Stage Video you have to rewrite your existing applications to use this new API. On the other hand the previous video APIs are still there if you don’t want to use Stage Video. And this is good because sometimes you want to apply effects (e.g. rotate, skew, Pixel Bender effects) and with Stage Video you can’t. This is because the video renderer using Stage Video is out of the Flash Player display list – it is not a DisplayObject. At the same time even if the system supports Stage Video there is no guarantee that your application can use it – this is because only a limited number of videos can be played at the same time on system.
Other goodies you’ll love in this beta are:
- In Internet Explorer 9 Flash Player 10.2 supports hardware accelerated rendering support
- Native custom mouse cursors – offloading this tasks from Flash Player to the OS
- Support for full screen mode with multiple monitors – you can have Flash Player full-screen on a secondary monitor and work on another monitor
Go install this version, play with it, build apps against it and let us know what you think. So next year when we launch the release version everything will work just great!