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Adobe Halts Flash Player Development For Mobile Browsers
Adobe Halts Flash Player Development For Mobile Browsers
November 9, 2011 | By Mike Rose

November 9, 2011 | By Mike Rose
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    14 comments
More: Smartphone/Tablet, Business/Marketing



Adobe revealed last night that it is discontinuing development of its Flash Player for mobile browsers, and instead focusing on HTML5 for mobile devices.

The company said that HTML5 is "the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms," and that Adobe will no longer develop the mobile Flash Player following the release of version 11.1.

Instead, Abode will increase its investment in HTML5, including advanced gaming and premium video options. The company aims to enable Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for mobile devices.

Meanwhile, the company is continuing to work on Flash Player 12 for PC browsers, and it said that it is looking to "offer developers and content publishers great options for delivering compelling web and application experiences across PCs and devices."

Danny Winokur, VP at Adobe, said, "We are super excited about the next generations of HTML5 and Flash. Together they offer developers and content publishers great options for delivering compelling web and application experiences across PCs and devices."

There has been conflict between Adobe and Apple in the past over Adobe's Flash platform. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs said last year that his company's decision not to support Flash on its iOS devices was due to Flash being a closed platform.

"Adobe claims that we are a closed system, and that Flash is open, but in fact the opposite is true," he explained. He noted that anyone that wants to develop for Flash has to go through Adobe.

Elsewhere, Adobe altered its fourth quarter 2011 fiscal results forecast. As part of the forecast, the company revealed that it is planning to cut its staff numbers by around 750 people in North America and Europe. The most recent total headcount at Adobe was 10,040 as of September 2 this year.

[UPDATE: A report on ZDnet cited sources close to Adobe who said: "Our future work with Flash on mobile devices will be focused on enabling Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for all the major app stores. We will no longer adapt Flash Player for mobile devices to new browser, OS version or device configurations. Some of our source code licensees may opt to continue working on and releasing their own implementations. We will continue to support the current Android and PlayBook configurations with critical bug fixes and security updates."]


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Comments


Joshua Bence
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I agree, AIR is the way to go for mobile performance. You can export directly to iOS and Android. This removes the issues from browsers completely.

Andrew Grapsas
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HTML5 will not live up to the promise.



Native app development will continue to dominate.

Lars Doucet
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As a long-time flash developer, this doesn't totally surprise me. I love Flash because of its cross-platform support, but I hate it because of all of its limitations.



Ultimately, I feel super "meh" about HTML5. Whenever someone says HTML5, they really mean "Javascript." When (or IF, rather) HTML5 finally "arrives" and delivers everything that's been promised and works the same on all platforms - then I'll gladly give it a shot. What'd be super cool is if Adobe released the flash player source code (which ain't ever going to happen).



In the end, I'll probably move to something like HaXe that lets me still deploy a nice, cross-platform browser-based solution for PC's, and still hit native compile targets for other platforms.

Andrew Grapsas
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HaXe is wonderful :)

David Gillen
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To be 100% totally clear all this means is that you will not see flash inside a mobile Browser. Flash will still run apps for mobile devices. This is how we should be packaging games for mobile anyways. This has no effect on flash games for mobile except forcing you to compile new versions for each platform and distribute them through the relevant app stores. Think kongregate app rather than kongregate website. Flash is still capable of providing the write once experience I love it for. http://www.zdnet.com/blog/perlow/exclusive-adobe-ceases-developme
nt-on-mobile-browser-flash-refocuses-efforts-on-html5-updated/192
26

Harry Fields
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HTML5 is just way too slow compared to Flash. On paper, it sounds great. In practice.... leaves a lot to be desired.

zed zeek
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performance is ok, eg see my game above, the problem though javasciprt is a terrible language mainly cause its weak typed. Like actionscript/flash used to be.

Chris Melby
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@Harry,

I agree.



@Zed,

I absolutely despise JavaScript even though I know it well. Outside of accessing the browser DOM, I only dirty my hands with it when someone pays me to do so.



And on performance; I've encountered my share of Flash sites that were developed by bozos, but some of these prime HTML5 examples powered by JavaScript, that actually work on all browsers -- even when the concept is really impressive and more so that they actually did it in JS -- has me longing for the worst of a Flash site.

Anatoly Ropotov
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Here's my take. http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/AnatolyRopotov/20111109/8260/Let_t
here_be_Flash.php

Thomas Schenck
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When flash is dead, I will be happy. The world did not (and does not) need any more standards, we need to improve the ones we have as a group.

Leo Gura
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Right, that's why the best solution is to scrap what works everywhere (Flash) and implement something new with severe limitations (HTML5).



Platform wars are about politics first and foremost.

Anatoly Ropotov
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Severe limitations? More like "not working anywhere".

Thomas Schenck
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Adding Flash to a browser is, in essence, adding an O/S inside an O/S. It's silly and wasteful. Flash does not work everywhere, and is a major vector for computer attacks and tracking. It's this way because it's trying give access to things a web-browser was never intended for. Give it up and write a real application. Get over it.

Chris Melby
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@Thomas,



Nice scare tatics remark, which then goes on to show your ignorance of why plug-ins like Flash became a popular standard in the first place.



Do you propose we eliminate all plug-ins?



Good to know that individuals like you are part of a wanten digression of the web, because less choice is always a good thing?



And you hardly speak for the world and in light of recent news, nothing has really changed. Your remarks are nothing new and hardly insightful, and were probably derived from the same point as other haters; so that dead guy.


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