Adobe: iPhone will support Flash eventually
Adobe says it believes Apple will cave to public pressure and one day support Flash on the iPhone.
The software firm made the claim as it announced that it was bringing its Air platform to mobile phones, which allows developers to create Flash applications that can be delivered through a variety of mobile app stores.
Adobe has been racing to keep pace with the proliferation of smartphones, netbooks and now tablet PCs, and has built an alliance of industry leaders to work on making web browsing consistent across devices.
The environment has been further complicated by players such as Apple, Nokia and Vodafone rolling out their own application stores, opening up proprietary distribution channels that compete with simply browsing the web.
I suspect that what will happen is that as we have more devices in the market… Apple will have more market pressure to include Flash on the iPhone
David Wadhwani, who runs Adobe’s Platform business, says Adobe will continue to support both ways of distributing Flash. It has already published tools that offer developers a way to convert Flash applications into ones that work on the iPhone.
“We personally believe very strongly that open distribution will be the model that will prevail, but we’re agnostic,” he said. “Ultimately, the consumer will decide.”
Adapting power-hungry video applications that work well on everything from desktop PCs to mobile devices has posed a major challenge. Running such applications can also quickly drain batteries.
Apple has until now rejected Flash on these grounds, and has also claimed that Flash is “buggy,” blaming it for instances of Macs crashing.
“We reject the accusation that Flash is buggy,” said Wadhwani, and pointed to the fact that Apple makes money when consumers buy through the App Store, but not when they access content via their web browser.
“Apple would like to move rich content off the web and into its App Store, where it can more readily monetise it,” he added.
“I suspect that what will happen is that as we have more devices in the market… Apple will have more market pressure to include Flash on the iPhone,” he said.
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