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Hardware acceleration added to Flash Player 10.1 for Mac


Adobe has released a new version of its Flash Player for Mac that officially supports hardware acceleration for H.264 video content.

The update was announced Tuesday by Adobe product manager Thibault Imbert on his blog. The feature, code-named "Gala," had been announced several months prior, but was unavailable with the official release of Flash Player 10.1 for Mac in June. In a break from usual protocol, Adobe enabled the new feature in a security release.

Hardware acceleration in Flash Player 10.1 for Mac is available only for Mac OS X Snow Leopard and the following graphics cards: NVIDIA GeForce 9400M, GeForce 320M or GeForce GT 330M.

According to Adobe, a CPU utilization reduction of up to two-thirds is possible when GPU hardware acceleration is active.

Flash Player for Mac has recently been the subject of controversy. In April, Apple CEO Steve Jobs published an open letter criticizing Adobe's Flash offerings. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen subsequently dismissed Jobs' letter as a "smokescreen."