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Everything You Need To Know About FLV Players In A Flash

by Joe Kukura on May 9, 2013

download flv playerFlash video is all over the Internet, but at the same time Flash video on the Internet is a dying format. On one hand, you see Flash used on all of the major streaming video sites like YouTube or Facebook. On the other hand, Flash is jumping into the dustbin of history — its maker Adobe has totally given up on updating Flash for mobile devices. Smartphone and tablet users are on their own with Flash video, and must seek out a third-party FLV player or app to play Flash videos on mobile devices.

The “big picture” reason that Flash is doomed is that it doesn’t work on mobile devices. Apple stopped shipping Flash on new iPhones and iPads in 2010 because the CPU and battery demands of Flash diminished the performance of those lovely iOS devices. “The video on almost all Flash websites currently requires an older generation decoder that is not implemented in mobile chips and must be run in software,” the late Steve Jobs said in an open letter explaining why Apple abandoned Flash. “The mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short.”

Two years later, Adobe announced it would no longer support Flash for Android devices, and pulled Flash from the Google Play store. That means you can’t use Flash on an iPhone, iPad, or most Android smartphones or tablets. That eliminates most mobile devices!

Can’t play Flash videos on your computer? No problem. Just download the free version of RealPlayer and you can start watching FLV videos, well, in a flash.


Flash videos play in the FLV file format. Since FLV videos are found on websites, they are really only designed to play on those sites while being viewed on a computer’s web browser. Sure, you can view embedded Flash videos on your computer’s web browser, but the media players that come standard on your computer won’t play them. If you want to play those Flash video files offline, then you’ll need to find a good, solid free FLV player.

If you’re offline you’ll need some form of dedicated FLV player to watch these videos. The easiest option is to download FLV players to watch Flash videos on your computer.Whatever you do, don’t pay for a FLV player! There are plenty of trustworthy free FLV players made by reputable companies that are perfectly safe to use.


Free software can be loaded with all kinds of garbage like viruses, malware, and bloatware. That’s why it’s important to download FLV players or other free software from companies with long track records of providing safe and easy to use software. RealPlayer plays FLV videos with ease and it’s one of the fastest and safest way to download a free FLV player. If you don’t already have it, you can download RealPlayer by clicking on the orange button on the top right corner of this page.

If you’ve ever come across a video while surfing the web on a smartphone that wouldn’t play, it’s likely that it was a FLV video embedded on that website. While the options to download FLV players to a mobile device are limited, one of the easiest things to do is to convert FLV videos to a format that is compatible with your device. This feature is included with the free version of RealPlayer. Just download the FLV video on your computer and save it in the RealPlayer library. Then convert it and transfer it to your phone. If you don’t know what format works with your phone, no worries. Simply select your phone model and RealPlayer does the rest.


There is more to the demise of Flash than just a lack of mobile support. The “little picture” reason that developers embraced an alternative to Flash video is that it cannot really be customized, so they’re less willing to work with it. All the logic and programming built into Flash is restricted by patents. The method by which Flash videos are encapsulated — that is, their various streams of data are turned into characteristics like voice, color and screen size — are all built into proprietary software belonging to Adobe.

Flash is rapidly being replaced by HTML5 — an open-source format with multimedia capabilities that displays and operates similarly on smartphones, tablets, computers, and laptops. To the viewer, HTML5 will work the same way as Flash did. However, developers have the ability to customize the video in all kinds of wild and exciting new ways — from creating their own Play, Pause, and Volume buttons, to choosing the image to display in the background while the video loads, to producing interactive video. Adding video is much easier for developers and designers in HTML5, and best of all, you won’t see those maddening “Your Adobe Flash plug-in has crashed” messages anymore.

What’s your favorite FLV player? Have you found any good FLV players for iPads and smartphones? Just how often does your Adobe Flash player plug-in crash on your computer? Crash the party with your observations in the comments section below.

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

1 mizzy July 17, 2013 at 1:36 am

I don’t need an flv player per se – except Realplayer 16, after it downloads in MP4 will NOT play the downloaded video (my own online w/webcam videos). It will only download in MP4 apparently no matter what preference is selected. And flv is not even on the list! I and many people for personal purposes (not taking anything that we shouldn’t) need to be able to download in flv format and then be able to convert it if needed.

Yes I’ve tried using RP to play a video it downloaded in MP4 and get an error. Click for more information, see there may be a codec needed? Click that and get a page saying:

Sorry, We could not find support.real.comapp

It may be unavailable or may not exist. Try using the suggestions or related links below, or search again using our web search.

Absolutely ridiculous! And you want people to pay for the privilege of being completely frustrated and unable to use your product?

2 RealPlayer July 17, 2013 at 8:45 am

Sorry for the inconvenience. Please email with information about your issue so we can help you with the problem.

3 nick July 17, 2013 at 10:34 am

I am deleting Real Player and going to find an alternative. You cannot play downloads anymore and I have downloaded codecs but the play screen still thinks and just goes grey and wants to close.


4 RealPlayer Team July 17, 2013 at 11:12 am

Hi Nick,

Sorry for the inconvenience, Please provide us some more information about the problem to assist you further.

5 Swee-Hin July 18, 2013 at 9:39 pm

Hello, RPTeam:

I have a subscription to Real Player Plus and it has been working well until yesterday. Now when I try to download Youtube films, the download button does not appear.
Can you please help me to restore this download button,

6 RealPlayer Team July 19, 2013 at 8:51 am

Hi Swee-Hin,

To get ‘Download This Video’ button, enable the RealPlayer Plug-in in your web browser by following this link:

If that doesn’t work, send an email to so that we can help you further.

7 anne August 3, 2013 at 10:06 pm


8 RealPlayer Team August 4, 2013 at 8:33 am

Let me inform you, YouTube and other sites have introduced a new streaming standard. Essentially, the files that are being downloaded are not actually MP4s but a new streaming format that is being misidentified as MP4. We are working toward compatibility with this new format and expect to release a fix in mid-August.

In the meantime, you can try an interim fix provided in this link (if you are using Internet Explorer):

9 Katherine August 27, 2013 at 12:13 pm

RealPlayer will no longer play Flash files (.flv) since the latest updates by Adobe. When trying to play them offline RealPlayer asks to download the proper codec and insists on have the latest flash player installed in IE. But even with the latest version installed, it will not play offline.

10 RealPlayer Team August 27, 2013 at 12:49 pm

Try uninstalling and reinstalling RealPlayer by following this link: (Delete the RealPlayer folders as mentioned in the link before reinstalling RealPlayer) and enable the RealPlayer plug-in in your browser by following:

After that, try to download the videos and play it using RealPlayer. If the issue still persists, please send an email to, include a brief description of the issue, copy and paste the link to this thread within the email for further assistance.

11 Guller August 30, 2013 at 8:26 pm

Can RP player streaming flv videos on tablets and other hand held devices????
Your sales talk does not address this.
If RP cannot, do say so and not beat around the bush and waste our time!

12 RealPlayer Team September 1, 2013 at 11:25 am

Using RealPlayer Android app you can,

• Play music and videos, and view photos, all in one place
• Available in nine languages
Optimized graphics for high-res devices
• Playlists
• lastFM scrobbling
• Voice commands for search
• Control playback when phone is locked
• Sharing on popular social media sites
• Move application to SD card
• Set your favorite song as a ringtone
• Headphones controls
• Auto bookmarking of videos
• Home screen widgets to control media
• Access any file format your device supports

Additional Features – available through an in-app upgrade ($4.99)
• Graphic equalizer with ability to save custom settings
• Metadata discovery using the Gracenote database
• Manual metadata editing
• Cross fading for a seamless music experience • RealAudio and RealVideo (rmvb) support
• No advertisements

13 Glenda Walker October 25, 2013 at 11:40 am

Can someone take me step by step to do what I need to do? So that I can watch movies & watch tv on my phone? Help me Please?!

14 RealPlayer October 30, 2013 at 12:41 am

Have you tried RealPlayer Cloud yet? When you upload videos to the cloud, you can then watch them on a mobile device via the RealPlayer Cloud app or a web browser.

15 RealPlayer October 30, 2013 at 12:43 am

Try signing up for RealPlayer Cloud. Then you can watch videos uploaded to RealPlayer Cloud on mobile devices.

16 Nanette Scheetz June 19, 2014 at 6:53 pm

I’ve been using RealPlayer for a while now and am having some difficulty now that I am using a mac computer. I finally found a way to download Youtube videos, but now they download as mp4 instead of flv and will not play with any program (including RealPlayer). How can I change the settings to download as a flv file?

17 RealPlayer Team June 20, 2014 at 9:36 pm

Sorry that you are unable to play .MP4 videos. Please respond with the following information:

1. What error message do you receive while playing .MP4 videos?
2. Does this happen for all .MP4 videos or for a particular file?
3. What exactly happens when you try to play videos?
4. Do you have QuickTime Player installed?
5. If yes, have you tried playing .MP4 videos using it?

The more specific you are, the better I will be able to assist you. If you have any additional questions, please send an email to

18 Jeremy September 2, 2014 at 6:19 pm

in the past I could download videos now every time I try downloader says unable to download, it works other places but not on youtube, how do I fix this

19 RealPlayer Team September 2, 2014 at 9:49 pm

I am sorry you get ”Unable to download” error message while downloading videos. Other customers have reported the same problem. We are aware of this and our development team is working to get it resolved soon.

We would suggest you to try downloading videos using RealPlayer browser or Mozilla Firefox.

To use RealPlayer browser,

>Open RealPlayer.
>Click on RealPlayer Menu (at the top left corner)
>Select File.
>Click on Open.
>Type and click OK.
>Play any video and download it.

To find the root cause of this issue, we require the following information,

- Download and upload speed of your internet connection (visit: to check it)
- URL of the video you are unable to download. (Link of the video)
- Size of the video appears in RealDownloader window.

Also, we suggest you to play the video till end and try downloading it. If that doesn’t help, reduce the video resolution on YouTube by clicking the settings icon (the cog icon at the lower right hand corner of the video window) and try downloading the video.

The more specific you are, the better we will be able to assist you.

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