Acording to John Nack (Adobe) the next version of Flash Player (10.2) will be up-to ten times more efficient than previous versions, hopefully making browsing YouTube a less stressing experience.
In addition to decoding the data, [Flash] has to convert YUV data to the RGB colorspace and combine the image with other Flash elements. Then it has to cooperate with another application (web browser) to present the video to the user… It plays linear media files from start to finish while combining the video with a wide array of graphical and interactive elements (buttons, bitmaps, vector graphics, filters), as well as providing network, webcam, and microphone facilities, all programmable via a full-featured scripting language.
The new version of Adobe Flash Player offers a video playback optimised mode called Stage Video
Stage video can leverage complete hardware acceleration of the video rendering pipeline, from video decoding to scaling/blitting, enabling best-in-class playback performance. Stage Video can dramatically decrease processor usage and enables higher frame rates, reduced memory usage, and greater pixel fidelity and quality.
Since Steve Jobs banned flash from his platform we have been rooting for flash to go from strength to strength and are very excited about these developments. A Beta can be downloaded for the developer preview release. Adobe hasn't announced a mobile path for Flash Player 10.2 but we do hope this can be a natural transition for this software.