Android Tip: Switch Browser Plug-ins To On Demand For Faster Web Browsing

The inclusion of Flash support in the Android 2.2 browser is good and bad news. The good news is that it enables you to see Flash content when you want to see it, the bad news is that it enables you to see Flash content when you don’t want to see it. Many web sites have all sorts of ads that use Flash that you may not want to see, and displaying them can actually slow down browsing pages on Android phones.

Fortunately, there is a way to configure the Android browser so that it does not automatically load Flash content. Tap Menu, More, Settings, scroll down until you see Enable plug-ins and tap the down arrow. You will see three options: Always on, which means plug-ins are always running, On demand, which means plug-ins only run when you specify, and Off. Because Flash is a plug-in, selecting the on demand option will make Flash content not display unless you specify it to display.

I found that the change does not take affect until after the browser restarts. To shutdown the browser from the home screen tap Menu, Settings, Applications, Manage Applications, tap the Running tab, tap Browser, and finally tap Force Stop. When you open a web page after you make this change you will see a box with a down arrow in the spot where the Flash content will appear; to see the content tap the down arrow.

Publish date: May 25, 2010 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT