Adobe announces lightweight media player software

Despite efforts by Microsoft, Apple, and RealNetworks, the majority of video sharing sites out there use Adobe’s Flash technology to serve streaming video content. Adobe has decided to capitalize on this advantage by announcing the Adobe Media Player, a piece of software that will—among other things—let users download and view Flash videos offline.

Adobe describes the Media Player as a “lightweight download” that will be cross-platform and based on open standards. In addition to supporting offline viewing, Adobe says its Media Player will enable higher-quality Flash playback, support full-screen video, and include a “powerful Favorites feature” that will automatically download new episodes of TV shows or video podcasts. The software will also support a variety of distribution methods, including on-demand streaming, live streaming, progressive downloads, and “protected download-and-play.” The Adobe Media Player will become available as a free beta release later this year, and Adobe expects to introduce the completed version by the end of 2007.

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