Could Flash Be Coming to the App Store?



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A decade ago already, there was Flash Lite, specially made for mobile devices, I don't ever hear this in discussions on the subject.

Even if the iPhone would support only the most basic animation and actionscript, like the Flash 4 or 5, that would be enough to do most of the banners and site-menus and such.

Apple just doesn't want Flash on the iPhone, because then a lot of apps that they now sell in the App Store, could be done with Flash. Now they can control things by choosing which they allow in the iTunes App store. And make some money on the side. Keep the focus of attention. Stay in control.



The problem with your premise is that you assume that just by adding Flash that it will be a better experience than what you have now. This is not supported by the evidence that we currently have, which is the Flash implementation on the HTC Hero and the piss poor performance of Flash on the desktop. If Adobe can't fix the problems with Flash on the desktop with the HUGE amounts of horsepower and memory available to them what makes you think they can do it on a mobile device with severe limitations in both areas? Personally, I don't want to go back to the days of a mobile browser that sort of works but has massive performance issues. I love Safari and the way that it loads web pages now. I don't feel much of a compromise while I'm on the road.

And once you open that door then websites have ZERO incentive to stop using Flash. The more popular the iPhone and other smart phones that don't use Flash are, the more websites we'll see using non-Flash alternatives.



Flash would be a welcome addition to the iPhone/iPod Touch platform. It could take browsing with the device much further. So far I have very little trouble using the web with my Touch, but Flash would open up more content on some of the sites I commonly visit. I hope this rumor is true.


J Keirn-Swanson

I've gone through the article two more times since your comment skotts and I'm finding it hard to pinpoint the actual errors you find so annoying. If you could be more explicit, I'm always open to constructive criticism. As far as Frank's comments go, I myself tend to visit quite a few very video and flash heavy sites, so I get the cube o' doom on a nearly daily basis. Obviously YMMV. Now that Failblog (for one instance) has switched to viddler because of youtube problems, my ICHC app only has a big arrow indicating video and the site itself has the cube where a vid should be. Sites that don't have a mobile version and a Flash intro are likewise impenetrable, as I've run into that. Now again, in my opinion, the lack of some ability to see certain flash elements, not just videos of people falling off of roofs and whatnot, is a big failing on the part of the mobile browser on one end and the site designers on the other. If everyone could agree on HTML 5 video standards and if there were a way to squeeze Flash out of the whole process, that'd be fantastic, but until that day comes (when and if), a browser that can't read Flash is a big hindrance, in my opinion. Finally, the title is what it is because it is possible that Flash might be coming to the App Store relatively soon. That's news. " "Will Apple and the iPhone save us from Flash?" is editorializing.


I think the author needs to do some proof reading--there are many errors which makes reading this very annoying



I find your assertion that a browser without flash only being half as good as one that does to be wildly exaggerated. In order for it to hold true then fully half the sites I visit on the web while using my iPhone would have to end "in little cubical boxes alerting us to missing plug-ins" as you stated. That is far from the case.

I am not saying that I never see one of those boxes but my rough estimates would put it at about 5-10% of the sites I visit. This is a far cry from half.

I hope that Apple's refusal to add Flash to the iPhone helps us all in the end. Look at this review of the new HTC Hero android device that does use Flash:

Allow me to quote the relevant passage: "So Flash is kind of a big deal on new smartphones. The iPhone doesn't have it, the Pre doesn't have it, BlackBerry devices don't have it... but the Hero does. Unfortunately, in our testing, we found the inclusion actually hurts operation of the phone more than it helps. When browsing to a site heavy on Flash (there are many), the browser loading times were abysmal. Furthermore, trying to view videos in-window produced choppy, nearly unwatchable results."

My hope is that the iPhone will prove to be soooo popular that it will force sites that really don't need Flash (i.e. most of them) to steer away from using Flash from a business perspective. They will want their sites to work on the most popular mobile devices, and especially the iPhone whose user demographics are highly sought after by ANY business.

Instead of your original question, "Could Flash Be Coming to the App Store?" we should be asking, "Will Apple and the iPhone save us from Flash?"


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