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Adobe CEO and President Shantanu Narayen  (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen responds to Steve Jobs' open letter

Earlier today, Steve Jobs pulled out a shotgun and fired away at Adobe at point-blank range. Jobs laid out a six-point plan of attack detailing why Adobe Flash is detrimental to the Mac and iPhone/iPod touch/iPad mobile platforms and why the web should just let the "proprietary standard" die.

Well, we knew that Adobe wasn't just gonna let Jobs' barbs fly without a response -- and like clockwork, Adobe's CEO has answered back. The Wall Street Journal's Alan Murray interviewed Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen about Jobs' comments and here are a few of the highlights:

  • Adobe believes in open content; Apple is threatened by Adobe's penchant for creating cross-platform software.
  • Narayen likens the fight between Apple and Adobe to the rift between Jon and Kate Gosselin.
  • Jobs' open letter was merely a "smokescreen"; Apple's restrictions are stifling development and have "nothing to do with technology".
  • Narayen refutes the assertion that Adobe Flash is the main reason why Macs crash.
  • Jobs' comments about poor battery life on machines using Adobe Flash are "patently false".
  • "It doesn't benefit Apple, and that's why you see this reaction".
  • Narayen asserts that the consumer should be able to decide which technologies they want to use and he thinks that a multi-platform world is where the future is headed.

Interestingly, Narayen doesn't make any mention of HTML5 which Jobs suggests that developers use to crush Adobe Flash. You can view the full interview here at the WSJ's Digits blog.

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Jobsian Hypocrisy
By morphologia on 4/29/2010 4:41:43 PM , Rating: 5
I'm still reeling from Steve's whole "proprietary" complaint against Adobe. No company on earth is more proprietary than Apple. You can't even service a Mac yourself, to any extent, unless you want to risk a nocturnal visit from Apple's goon squad.

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By MozeeToby on 4/29/2010 4:56:11 PM , Rating: 5
First and foremost, let me make this clear. I am in no way an Apple Fanboy. I don't own a single Apple product, and I don't think I ever have. The last piece of Apple technology I used regularly were the IIe's in my elementary school computer lab.

Now that that's established, there's a large difference between a device being proprietary and content being proprietary. A proprietary device locks in people who want to use that device, proprietary content locks in everyone who wants to view that content. In order to be affected by Apple I would need to go out and buy an Apple product. In order to be impacted by Flash all I need to do is visit a website. It casts a wider net that has attempted (successfully) to drag everyone into supporting your platform, whether they like it or not.

Not that I agree with Apple's stance, you can't just wave your hand and say "it's good for consumers" and then be angry when your consumers don't agree. By the same token, you could make arguments very similar to Job's against the use of gifs, mp3s, mpeg, HDMI cables, dvds, blu-rays, and any number of other things, all of which Apple devices support.

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By RealityCheckDude on 4/30/2010 3:35:39 PM , Rating: 2
Not that I agree with Apple's stance, you can't just wave your hand and say "it's good for consumers" and then be angry when your consumers don't agree. By the same token, you could make arguments very similar to Job's against the use of gifs, mp3s, mpeg, HDMI cables, dvds, blu-rays, and any number of other things, all of which Apple devices support.

An Apple Computer is technically, an," Apple device " correct?

Please explain what Apple Computer natively supports Blu-ray playback?

Answer: NONE!!!

The same goes for the Iphone and the Ipad.

Blu-ray playback NOT natively supported.

Blu-ray has been out since 2006, there's no legitimate excuse for non-Blu-ray playback. PERIOD !!!

SJ's excuse for this, a few years back, was a F ear, U ncertainty, and D oubt laced, Namby Pamby, Propaganda, " ...the licensing is Funky... " garbage, lame excuse.

This latest ploy is the same rubbish, meant to keep Brainwashed, Apple Users content, that their Iphone or Ipad lack Flash Support.

Steve J is looking out for them, making sure that Apple Users are not encumbered by, "Funky Licensing Schemes", or Evil, "Flash Support".

Yeah, Right !!!

No Kool-Aid for me, thank you.

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By darkblade33 on 5/3/2010 8:08:53 PM , Rating: 2
What about Google and Palm ? Both companies use WebKit.. which is Apples OPEN Source HTML5 rendering engine.

Think that sounds ridiculous ? Why does Google, Palm, and ( now Blackberry in near future ) use HTML5, flash-less browsers, just like Apple ?? ... it began when Google removed all flash from Youtube mobile, not because of Apple.

Furthermore if ANY, or all of those above companies, had to wait on Adobe Flash, which is 100% closed and proprietary, Each and EVERY SINGLE ONE of those companies would be 100% at the mercy of Adobe, have to depend on them for upgrades, updates.. in which any software that PALM, Android, iPhone used would be built on Flash ( again a closed standard which none of those companies have control over ) and all those companies would have software basically built on a house of cards.

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By ralniv on 4/29/2010 7:47:23 PM , Rating: 2
Apple is quite supportive of open software standards. They developed OpenCL and moved it into the open standards realm. They released the Darwin UNIX-like operating system that underlies OS X to open source. Safari is a standards-based browser (e.g. CCS3, Javascript, HTML 5) and available on multiple platforms. Apple uses the OpenGL API for 2D and 3D graphics and MPEG-4 for multimedia. Apple contributed to the development of the open AAC audio encoding scheme. OS X natively supports the PDF open document standard (released to open standard by Adobe a few years ago).

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By darkblade33 on 5/3/2010 8:20:52 PM , Rating: 2
Agree 100%.. you never hear how Google and Palm both use Apple's WEBKIT ( an "open source" HTML5 engine ) for their mobile devices.. adroid web browser .. etc..

People have no clue. If iPhone, Android, Palm software had to rely on Flash they would be at the mercy of closed, proprietary software.. None of those companies, in this case because of the article Apple, want to wait on Adobe so they can further software growth. Droid wouldn't have 25,000 apps, iPhone wouldnt have 175,000 apps.. they have much less

RE: Jobsian Hypocrisy
By darkblade33 on 5/3/2010 8:23:44 PM , Rating: 2
PS: Lets not forget.. Palm, Google (Droid), and Apple would ALL be paying Adobe royalties for software based off Flash on mobile devices ..

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