Adobe Upgrades Flash Media Servers

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2008-11-17 Print this article Print

Adobe announces Adobe Flash Media Server 3.5 and Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server 3.5 at its Adobe MAX 2008 conference. New features and functionality in both servers include: dynamic streaming to provide end users with a broadcast-quality, uninterrupted viewing experience; improved content protection; and the ability to stream live and on-demand content with H.264 video files.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Adobe Systems announced Adobe Flash Media Interactive Server 3.5 and Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server 3.5 at its Adobe MAX 2008 user conference here.

The two new versions of the company's Flash-based technology represent two key components of the Adobe Flash Platform. The new servers include new media delivery options, such as: dynamic streaming; enhanced H.264 video and High Efficiency AAC (HE-AAC) audio support; and the ability to pause and seek within a live stream. These innovations improve the quality of video delivered over the Web and offer richer interactive experiences for users.

Meanwhile, according to independent research firm comScore, 81 percent of worldwide online videos are viewed using Adobe Flash technology, making it the No. 1 format for video on the Web. Adobe Flash Player software is already installed on 98 percent of Internet-connected desktops and a growing number of mobile devices.

In addition to the aforementioned features of Adobe Flash Media Interactive Server 3.5, media encrypted with the Adobe Flash Media Rights Management Server software can also be streamed using RTMP and an integrated HTTP server for a complete turnkey solution to deliver comprehensive media experiences, the company said. Moreover, Adobe Flash Media Interactive Server 3.5 software includes live Digital Video Recorder (DVR) functionality that enables pause and seek within a live video stream, multipoint publishing - including the ability to inject data messages into a live stream - and mobile delivery to Flash Lite 3, either live or on-demand, the company said.

Also, to deliver media using Flash Media Server 3.5 software, users can implement their own streaming server hardware and network in-house, or partner with one of several leading content delivery network (CDN) providers that are part of the Flash Video Streaming Service (FVSS), Adobe said.

"In the past few years, Adobe has transformed the streaming video industry by providing content owners with a ubiquitous solution that lets them reliably deliver video to 98 percent of Internet-enabled desktops," said Tim Napoleon, chief strategist for Digital Media at Akamai. "Adobe continues to innovate with industry-leading breakthroughs like dynamic streaming and extensive interactivity. The features in Flash Media Server 3.5 are a huge step forward in allowing our customers to deliver rich and compelling HD video experience to consumers, as seen at As a premier member of the FVSS program with the largest Flash Media Server deployment, we're confident that the dynamic features in this new version will enhance our customer's ability to continue pushing the limits of Flash technology."

For his part, Peter Coppola, vice president of product management, Limelight Networks, said: "The breakthrough innovations in Adobe Flash Media Server 3.5, such as the ability to pause and seek in a live video stream, are enabling content providers to use the Internet to deliver experiences that go beyond the traditional broadcast realm."

Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server 3.5 will sell for $995. An upgrade from Adobe Flash Media Streaming Server 3.0 will be available for $249. Adobe Flash Media Interactive Server 3.5 will sell for $4,500. An upgrade from Adobe Flash Media Interactive Server 3.0 will be available for $349. Both products can be pre-ordered today at and are expected to be available in early 2009. 

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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