A relative told me that iOS can playback YouTube videos.

I thought that YouTube requires Flash. How come this is possible without Flash in iOS?

3 Answers 3


YouTube videos are offered in multiple formats, not only Flash. If viewing on an iOS device, then you get H.264 format.


Safari will show what the developper of the given website provides as alternative content for browsers (user agents) that do not support Flash. In many cases this is just nothing or the hint to download Flash player plugin. Youtube videos are played by the built-in youtube app of iOS.


There is a Youtube app built in which does not require flash. It probably makes use of HTML5 markup.

  • I rather think the app loads the video without the flash player. The youtube flash player itself loads the video (different sizes and codecs) either. The app directly loads those videos.
    – Martin
    Jun 13, 2011 at 16:13
  • 2
    The built in YouTube app does not load using html5. it uses h.264 directly from YouTube's servers
    – user6124
    Jun 14, 2011 at 2:34

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