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Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch
So long, farewell! Adobe cuts its losses and moves on to other mobile platforms

Well, it looks like it's the end of the road for any hopes of Adobe Flash on Apple's iPhone OS-based devices (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad). Although Steve Jobs has long since put his foot down regarding the matter, Adobe still held out hope that Jobs would change his mind.

However, those hopes were dashed earlier this month when Apple's iPhone OS 4.0 SDK banned the use of unapproved programming languages (including Adobe Flash). The move by Apple prompted some rather colorful language from Adobe Platform Evangelist Lee Brimelow.

Steve Jobs poured more salt on the wounds yesterday with an open letter that basically said that Adobe Flash's time has come and gone. "Flash is a successful business for Adobe, and we can understand why they want to push it beyond PCs," said Jobs "But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short."

It appears that Adobe has gotten the hint, and is now officially dropping its plans to push Flash Player onto the iPhone OS platform. Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch posted a response to Steve Jobs' rant -- Adobe's President and CEO made comments as well -- and still feels that Adobe could provide a "terrific experience" on the iPhone and iPad. However, the writing is on the wall and Lynch says that Adobe is shifting its energies to other mobile platforms.

“We have already decided to shift our focus away from Apple devices for both Flash Player and AIR," said Lynch. "We are working to bring Flash Player and AIR to all the other major participants in the mobile ecosystem, including Google, RIM, Palm (soon to be HP), Microsoft, Nokia and others.”

Lynch also said that there will be a public preview of Flash Player 10.1 for Android devices in May and that a full release will come the following month.

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Steve Job's loves flash
By Tony Swash on 4/30/2010 7:24:57 AM , Rating: 1
Steve Job's loves flash - on other phones.

Remember that Adobe has not yet released a working version of full flash for any mobile platform and it is already indicating that it will only run on the latest and fastest hardware (there's a powerful hint about its likely performance).

Remember that Adobe's track record is very poor in maintaing Flash on more than one OS at a time.

Note that the competitors to the iPhone have rushed to embrace Flash as a useful way to differentiate themselves from the iPhone and achieve some sort of marketing advantage based on better specs.

Note also that the non-iPhone sector will, seemingly, allow the Adobe's cross platform flash based development model to be implemented on their platforms.

The net result of all this will be that the iPhone's competitors will be embracing a technology that will almost certainly slow down their devices, will not work well in a touch interface and will leave them beholden to the whims of Adobe's bug fix and development cycle.

Finally note that consumers have shown absolutely no concern about the lack of flash on the iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad suite of devices and have bought them in their tens of millions.

Steve Jobs must be praying that the Apple's competitors in the mobile device market embrace Flash in all its glory. Adobe is Apple's secret weapon against its competitors.

RE: Steve Job's loves flash
By Johnmcl7 on 4/30/2010 5:00:25 PM , Rating: 2
The N900 has had full flash support since its launch although it rarely gets a mention.

RE: Steve Job's loves flash
By Targon on 5/1/2010 8:37:18 AM , Rating: 2
Flash is moving toward GPU acceleration since developers are doing more and more with Flash as time goes on, not less. Are all applications a bit larger now than they were 10 years ago? If applications get larger and do more over time, then it makes sense that Adobe would have to address some performance issues caused by the larger applications.

Adobe hasn't released 10.1 on any platform yet, mobile or otherwise, so it makes sense that they may want to do a multi-platform release, and mobile will see the full release when 10.1 is released for the desktop.

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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