2015 was a huge year for animation, browser performance, and interactivity.
Tumult Hype is our tool for producing interactive content for the web. In this post, I’ll cover some notable events of 2015, and look forward to what we’ll be watching for in 2016.
Unaware of what Hype is? Hype is a Mac app great for making infographics, HTML5 advertisements, responsive designs, and animated/interactive websites. Check out our gallery and forums for examples of what our amazing users create. Or, visit tumult.com/hype/.
Our 2015 Releases
In early 2015 we released Tumult Hype 3, a huge free update for Tumult Hype 2 owners with dozens of new features, enhancements, and bug fixes. Tumult Hype Professional, released alongside Tumult Hype 3, introduced 11 new features geared towards our more advanced users: a powerful physics engine, symbols, responsive layouts, custom timing functions, and much more. Both versions were also translated into French, German, Spanish, Japanese, and Chinese.
After almost a year of work, in December ☝︎, we released Tumult Hype 3.5, another massive update with viewport actions, smoother animations, backdrop filter support, CSS transforms for easily scaling elements, timeline enhancements, Monotype fonts, and many more updates.
September marked the one-year anniversary of our lively and active forums, which now contain 16 thousand posts — and climbing! The forums have been an invaluable tool for us to understand how we can improve Hype, a classroom for Hype beginners, and a great home for our most advanced Hype pros to create truly stunning works of art. We’re thrilled to witness what our users create as Hype becomes more powerful — freeform games (like Pacman!) and immersive experiences — like this site for Gustav Klimt by Julian Damy, which has also been published as an iOS app:
So, what else happened this year?
Adtech Jumps into HTML5
Flash had been dying a slow death, but this year was truly a wakeup call to designers and developers putting out SWFs. No industry felt the wave of change’s power harder than the digital ad industry.
Chris Ball’s post “Why HTML5 is causing the ad industry pain” covers the shock of transitioning an entire industry to a new set of tools and a new workflow. The swift transition into the new world of HTML5 has resulted in a huge skills shortage:
“Everyone knew it was going to come, but not as fast as it did. We expected a crossfade, a transition between Flash and HTML5, but instead we got what felt like someone turning off a light switch.”
For many companies in the throes of this transition, Tumult Hype has been the Flash-free answer. Introduced just a couple of weeks ago, Tumult Hype Professional v3.5 features an advanced export panel for easily creating and deploying HTML5 animations that are optimized for file size, performance, and browser compatibility requirements. We’re happy to see so much activity in our Advertising forum category around this transition.
We’re hearing from long-time Flash developers that Hype is a great tool for diving into HTML5, free from the security, compatibility, and legacy issues of the past. Check out our Flash Transition Guide if you’re making the switch.
Eyes on iBooks Author
iBooks Author is Apple’s free tool for producing iBooks and epubs, and this year’s first iBooks Author conference brought together authors, educators, book designers, and tool-makers (like us) in Nashville, TN. We had a great time meeting the iBooks community, and happily enjoyed meeting a few Hype users who’ve been with us since version 1.0.
When the iBooks Author community flourishes, educators, teachers, and authors win. Like many at the conference we’re anticipating new improvements from Apple in 2016.
We’re proud to report that Hype was named the best complement to iBooks Author at the end of this year’s conference, and we’ll make sure Hype continues to be the best tool for producing interactive content for the platform.
Animation & Browser News for 2015
Below are a few notable moments of the year from an HTML/Animation/Web Motion viewpoint:
- March 17th: Tumult Hype 3.0 and Tumult Hype Professional Released.
- July 15th: WIRED publishes Flash Must Die.
- July 19th: Information Week: Nine reasons flash must die and soon
- September: The Chrome team turns on the Plugin Power saving feature for Flash, which disables Flash for non essential content like ads.
- September 8th: Tumult Hype 3 wins ‘Best Complement to iBooks Author’ at iBooks Author Conference.
- September 16th: iOS9 released, with backdrop filter & content blocker support.
- September 22nd: Tumult publishes the Flash Transition Guide.
- November 17th: Mozilla introduces an animation timeline in Firefox.
- November 30th: Adobe Edge discontinued & Adobe Flash Professional CC rebranded as Adobe Animate CC.
- December 9th: Tumult Hype 3.5 released.
So that’s 2015. What might 2016 bring?
Web Trends Continuing into 2016
The SVG format holds enormous promise as a high quality, scalable, animate-able vector image format. As browsers consolidate around features for manipulating SVGs as first class citizens in the DOM, this format will truly become ready for the mainstream. When bitmap images are only used for photographs we’ll have a faster, more responsive web experience.
Browsers almost everywhere
What is the role of the mobile browser & responsive design when most companies use their mobile site as a launchpad to install their native app?
What signal is Apple giving web developers by not including a browser on the Apple TV or Apple Watch?
How will digital ads adapt to a world with aggressive and freely-available content blocking? Changes to privacy practices and technical changes for better mobile performance are obviously needed, but what changes will we see in ad interactivity and motion design?