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Steve Jobs: No Flash Support Is Not A Business-Driven Decision

Steve Jobs: No Flash Support Is Not A Business-Driven Decision

April 29, 2010 | By Kris Graft

April 29, 2010 | By Kris Graft
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As game developers and other iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad developers contemplate Apple's decision not to support Adobe's Flash, Apple CEO Steve Jobs has explained his company's decisions surrounding the platform.

"Adobe has characterized our decision as being primarily business driven -- they say we want to protect our App Store -- but in reality it is based on technology issues," he wrote in a recent letter. "Adobe claims that we are a closed system, and that Flash is open, but in fact the opposite is true."

Jobs categorized Flash as a closed platform, because anyone that wants to develop for Flash has to go through Adobe. "We strongly believe that all standards pertaining to the web should be open. Rather than use Flash, Apple has adopted HTML5, CSS and JavaScript – all open standards," Jobs said.

Flash has become a leading choice for game developers creating web-based games. With no support for iPhone or the new iPad, Flash games are out of luck, missing out on an audience comprised of millions of Apple mobile device owners.

But Jobs said that there are enough apps on Apple's devices to show that his company doesn't need to support the platform. "The 200,000 apps on Apple’s App Store proves that Flash isn’t necessary for tens of thousands of developers to create graphically rich applications, including games," he said.

"Flash was created during the PC era -- for PCs and mice. Flash is a successful business for Adobe, and we can understand why they want to push it beyond PCs. But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards -- all areas where Flash falls short," Jobs added.

"New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too)," he said. "Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind."


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