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Apple's iPad promo materials misleading on Adobe Flash support

post #1 of 175
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When Steve Jobs introduced the iPad on Wednesday, his live demonstrations with the device clearly showed the Safari browser was not capable of playing Adobe Flash. However, promotional images on Apple's Web site show that same content loading just fine.

One in a series of rotating images on Apple's main page shows a story from The New York Times, entitled "The 31 Places to Go in 2010." In the image, a picture of a beach in Montenegro is shown. The picture is part of 17 images displayed at the top of the story in Flash.

When accessing that same page on an iPhone, the images do not load. Instead, it says "In order to view this feature, you must download the latest version of flash player here," with a corresponding link.

It's likely the iPad photos are simply renderings of the device, rather than actual screenshots taken of the Web sites. For example, the URL bar for the Times Web site simply shows "http://travel.nytimes.com" rather than the address for the actual story displayed.

Apple has famously shunned Flash, with the Web plugin having no support in the iPhone Safari browser. The company has even encouraged developers to "stick with standards" and use CSS, JavaScript and Ajax instead of Adobe Flash. In short, it's unlikely that Flash support will exist in the iPad when it ships in two months.

This week, Adobe spoke out in criticism of Apple when Jobs' live presentation showed Flash did not work on the new multitouch iPad. Writing on the company's official Flash blog, Adrian Ludwig said "Apple is continuing to impose restrictions on their devices that limit both content publishers and consumers."

"Unlike many other ebook readers using the ePub file format, consumers will not be able to access ePub content with Apple's DRM technology on devices made by other manufacturers," Ludwig wrote. "And without Flash support, iPad users will not be able to access the full range of web content, including over 70% of games and 75% of video on the web."

He went on to note a number of popular Web sites that iPad users will not be able to access without Adobe Flash, including Hulu, ESPN, Farmville, and Disney, of which Jobs is the company's largest shareholder.

And yet Apple's Web site shows Flash content loading on the iPad, even when Jobs' live demonstration did not.

A Flash-based slideshow on The New York Times Web site, as seen on a Mac.

The iPad promotional image shows the Flash slideshow loaded in the browser.

The same slideshow will not load on the iPhone Safari browser.

In yet another example, the promotional iPad video featured on Apple's Web site shows the Times video player loading on the iPad's Safari browser. But that very same feature of the Web site did not load when Jobs did his live onstage demonstration.

The New York Times front page Flash video player on a Mac.

Apple's promotional video shows the Flash video section load just fine.

The video section did not load in Steve Jobs' live demonstration.

The video section does not load on an iPhone.

While Adobe has pushed for years to have Flash on the iPhone since it launched, Apple has not budged. The company's rejection of Flash and move towards alternatives such as HTML5 suggest the Web plugin will not likely appear on the iPad.

For more on why Apple isn't likely to support Flash in the iPhone OS, read AppleInsider's three-part Flash Wars series.
post #2 of 175
Showed NY Times videos playing on the iPhone.

I inquired about Flash support on the iPhone to a friend at Adobe mobile team last summer. His response paraphrased was "Jobs already has it and it is up to him to decide what to do with it."
post #3 of 175
I wonder if Flash on the iPad would make it feel snappier.

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post #4 of 175
I smell a class action law suit coming.... although not exactly sure how it would be written.
post #5 of 175
My argument with it not loading while he was showing off the iPad was the page wasn't fully loaded as you can tell by the bar in Safari it wasn't 80% done and we all know that Flash is the last thing to load in Safari. It seemed like the Wifi connection he was on was slow as well which surprised me as I would have thought he would have had a dedicated Wifi Network to work from so there wouldn't be a delay. So Flash may be incorporated but because of the page not loading fully everyone jumped on the "on no flash" bandwagon.
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post #6 of 175
How does Adobe know that Apple's ePUB will be DRM? I don't remember seeing this in the keynote. Isn't that just conjecture on Adobe's part?
post #7 of 175
Steve Jobs is far too meticulous in preparing his presentations to have "accidentally" opened a website with Flash that the iPad can't display. I have to believe that he knew full well what he was doing, and it was intentional.

It was a message to web developers, and it said: "We've sold millions and millions of iPhones without Flash and made so much money we can't even count it all. We intend to do the same with this new device. And if you want your websites to work properly on our shiny new toy, you need to stop using Flash."
post #8 of 175
NYTimes video will play through an app, not Safari, just like video does through other apps on the iPhone now.
post #9 of 175
I'm glad that the iPad does not support flash
Nobody cares about flash.
My grandmother doesn't even know what flash IS.
Flash would run down the battery.
The iPad is BETTER because it does not include flash.
post #10 of 175
I agree with Wiggin. As soon as I saw it I thought it was intentional. Not that Steve would say it out loud, but he was kind of saying "F you Adobe".
Strange. I'm okay with that.
post #11 of 175
I have mixed feelings about it, there are good uses for Flash that don't seem to be well-replaced with open web standards, but most flash objects seem to be ads that don't absolutely need to be flash. It seems like Visual Basic, something that's easy and quick to learn, easy to make something useful with, but most of the time, the product is terrible.
post #12 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by iGenius View Post

I'm glad that the iPad does not support flash
Nobody cares about flash.
My grandmother doesn't even know what flash IS.
Flash would run down the battery.
The iPad is BETTER because it does not include flash.

based on your scathing replies in other threads, I'm guessing this is sarcasm?
post #13 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by O4BlackWRX View Post

My argument with it not loading while he was showing off the iPad was the page wasn't fully loaded as you can tell by the bar in Safari it wasn't 80% done and we all know that Flash is the last thing to load in Safari. It seemed like the Wifi connection he was on was slow as well which surprised me as I would have thought he would have had a dedicated Wifi Network to work from so there wouldn't be a delay. So Flash may be incorporated but because of the page not loading fully everyone jumped on the "on no flash" bandwagon.

This isn't true for two reasons; first of all Safari clearly showed it was in need for a plug-in, but didn't have one ready. Second of all, there was nothing wrong with the internet connection. Jobs also did a demo on downloading an iBook, and that was amazingly fast.

Also, Steve stayed on the NYT page long enough for it to load.
post #14 of 175
Unsupported Flash is the closest thing we'll get to adblocking on one of these devices. So it's fine by me.
post #15 of 175
The page on their demo is dated January 8th. It's quite possible that on that day, it was the page for the URL shown. The rest of the page looks correct for http://travel.nytimes.com - an on that day, on that page, that may have simply been a photo/link to the real story. In other words, it may not be the flash version in the promotional image.

I see no proof that Flash is running in any of the Apple material.
post #16 of 175
Someone needs to take Flash out to the back 40 and put a bullet in it's head. I applaud Apple for not supporting it. And no, that's not sarcasm.
post #17 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

..."And without Flash support, iPad users will not be able to access the full range of web content, including over 70% of games and 75% of video on the web."...

...which come from the 30 million or so porn sites. This could well be one of the reasons of Apples policy and if so, I fully support it.
post #18 of 175
HTML5.

Youtube's already transitioning to it. So is Vimeo.
post #19 of 175
The flash plug in for the Mac is a nightmare.

Fact.

It crashes, it's slow, it maxes out the processor, it causes machines to over heat.

Fact.

The flash plug in is a proprietary piece of software developed by a third party, not by Apple.

Fact.

So - and I'm going out on a limb here - maybe if Adobe FIXED the plug in, made it work better, it would be welcomed.

Conjecture.

But Adobe aren't even trying, at least not in public. I don't want my iPad to crash everytime i hit another spank the monkey advert. I've got click2flash installed on Safari, safari no longer crashes. Youtube works just fine, and the video quality is massively superior to the flash version.

So ADOBE - fix flash. What Flash can do is great, the potential is fantastic. That it's an unstable piece of crap on all but top end wintel machines is Adobe's issue, not Apple's.

Also - who is to say that this thing can't run flash, and SJ simply blocked it to make a little statement? I don't believe Apple's marketing people are stupid enough to open themselves us to a false claim quite this big. Let's wait eight weeks and see.
post #20 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I have mixed feelings about it, there are good uses for Flash that don't seem to be well-replaced with open web standards, but most flash objects seem to be ads that don't absolutely need to be flash. It seems like Visual Basic, something that's easy and quick to learn, easy to make something useful with, but most of the time, the product is terrible.

It sure seems like a 'run once' type of thing would be appropriate, that way you dont have running flash constantly on the webpage/device while you're not watching it. To completely omit it seems worse than adding some limited type of implementation.
post #21 of 175
NYT, like many other content providers, will have an app that will allow seamless video/media similar to (but with better performance than) you expect from flash.Barring that, content providers can provide their video in Apple's native (better performance than flash) video codecs. Not sure what everyone is complaining about, since even flash on my Core 2 Duo mac gets pretty awful performance compared to just about any other multimedia platform.
post #22 of 175
As developers we're fully behind Apple's decision not to support Flash. Honestly, who needs all that 'disco' crap. We can do almost everything we want to in Ajax. Keep up the good work Steve.
post #23 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jensen G View Post

NYT, like many other content providers, will have an app that will allow seamless video/media similar to (but with better performance than) you expect from flash.Barring that, content providers can provide their video in Apple's native (better performance than flash) video codecs. Not sure what everyone is complaining about, since even flash on my Core 2 Duo mac gets pretty awful performance compared to just about any other multimedia platform.

I think just as youtube is transitioning to html5, so will every other free video website.
post #24 of 175
With all of the hype going on, I think Apple spoke a little too highly of the iPad while overlooking such obvious issues like no Flash.

Yeah I know, no Flash and no camera...but I still think it's a great product that will only get better. Price will come down, memory will go up within a year or two.

Check it out:

http://www.ipadlot.com
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post #25 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

It was a message to web developers, and it said: "We've sold millions and millions of iPhones without Flash and made so much money we can't even count it all. We intend to do the same with this new device. And if you want your websites to work properly on our shiny new toy, you need to stop using Flash."

Quote:
Originally Posted by iGenius View Post

Flash would run down the battery.

It is a tug of war between Apple on one side and Adobe and all Flash developers on the other side. A website without Flash will in general use less CPU cycles and battery and will be less crash-prone then one with it. Apple can optimize and fix bugs in Safari but they cannot optimize and fix bugs in Flash. Thus, when things are tight in regard to speed and energy consumption, excluding Flash helps you.

The question is whether Apple will have the power to kill Flash and more generally whether a company should have the right to kill a technology even if killing this technology could be considered to be beneficial for the world as a whole (which is debatable) if killing this technology would be beneficial to said company (offering a better web experience on mobile devices will help the 'largest mobile devices company').
post #26 of 175
What's up with Steve always plugging the New York Times?

It's been bankrupt and living on life support from Carlos Slim, it's not a beacon of success.
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post #27 of 175
Flash kind of sucks if you have dealt with it in Linux or Mac OSX you would hate it... Even in windows it is buggy and its probably the biggest security risk to the machine after IE.

Here are the reasons why flash should be kept out the iPhone and iPad.

1. Performance hog
2. Security vulnerabilities
3. Crash prone
4. Flash games are not meant for a touch screen device

If the iPad or iPhone had flash it still wouldnt be able to play most flash games because those games weren't designed for a touch interface.... Also most sites are moving to html5 to display video like YouTube and Vimeo. All we need is for Hulu to follow suit and end of flash to display video will happen soon after.

The iPad is directed at people that just want things to work and those individuals wouldnt know that the reason why their experience isnt perfect is because of flash and not the iPad. I read a post yesterday that stated that they were thinking about buying one for their kid but probably wont because without flash the games on Disney wont work. I normally just read and dont post but what I did feel the urge to tell him that those games werent built for a touch interface so even if the iPad supported flash those games wouldnt work.

And that is the core of the issue. Allowing something in your system that just play sucks is silly and shouldnt be done especially when most people will blame the device not the software for the issue. Techies know the cause of the problem but most people dont. Try to explain the difference between RAM and a Hard Drive and see how long it takes regular people to understand it (also see how many actually care how it works).
post #28 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

What's up with Steve always plugging the New York Times?

It's been bankrupt and living on life support from Carlos Slim, it's not a beacon of success.

Its recognizable to everyone and as such a good synechdoche for newspaper publishers everywhere
post #29 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Takeo View Post

Someone needs to take Flash out to the back 40 and put a bullet in it's head. I applaud Apple for not supporting it. And no, that's not sarcasm.

Agree. They have every right to do so, and its not easy to stand up for what you believe in when under the heavy gaze of loud-mouth critics.
post #30 of 175
Agreed! Apple gave adobe an opportunity to put flash on the iPhone, and adobe gave apple a bloated piece of software that relied on the CPY rather than the GPU.

Adobe can whine all they want and that may work when trying to get things from their mom's or dad's but this is the real world and if they want their application on these devices, they need to get their act together and actually learn how to program and some attention to detail while their at it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nkhm View Post

The flash plug in for the Mac is a nightmare.

Fact.

It crashes, it's slow, it maxes out the processor, it causes machines to over heat.

Fact.

The flash plug in is a proprietary piece of software developed by a third party, not by Apple.

Fact.

So - and I'm going out on a limb here - maybe if Adobe FIXED the plug in, made it work better, it would be welcomed.

Conjecture.

But Adobe aren't even trying, at least not in public. I don't want my iPad to crash everytime i hit another spank the monkey advert. I've got click2flash installed on Safari, safari no longer crashes. Youtube works just fine, and the video quality is massively superior to the flash version.

So ADOBE - fix flash. What Flash can do is great, the potential is fantastic. That it's an unstable piece of crap on all but top end wintel machines is Adobe's issue, not Apple's.

Also - who is to say that this thing can't run flash, and SJ simply blocked it to make a little statement? I don't believe Apple's marketing people are stupid enough to open themselves us to a false claim quite this big. Let's wait eight weeks and see.
post #31 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

Steve Jobs is far too meticulous in preparing his presentations to have "accidentally" opened a website with Flash that the iPad can't display. I have to believe that he knew full well what he was doing, and it was intentional.

It was a message to web developers, and it said: "We've sold millions and millions of iPhones without Flash and made so much money we can't even count it all. We intend to do the same with this new device. And if you want your websites to work properly on our shiny new toy, you need to stop using Flash."


I agree, and I wonder how long it will be before Adobe responds with a lawsuit or simply pulling it programs off the Mac.

Looking at the iPad, the future of locked down, dumbed down, no choice but what Steve says sort of computing, that Steve would be very happy if Adobe did pull their programs off the Mac.

Jesus, what the hell has gotten into him?

Has Steve forgotten that his tiny market share has been falling lately? He acts like he controls the computing world and he doesn't.

He doesn't have whole lot of time left and he's trying to set things into motion that he will be unable to maintain.

Flash is not going to be on the iPhone, iPod Touch or the iPad for the reason the carriers won't allow that sort of control.

Adobe will have to make a version of Flash just for Apple's devices? I don't think so, especially if there is no money involved.
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post #32 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

What's up with Steve always plugging the New York Times?

It's been bankrupt and living on life support from Carlos Slim, it's not a beacon of success.

Not to mention a rag that abandoned honest journalism 149 years ago.
post #33 of 175
There are 2 misunderstandings here. Flash will not play on the iPad. However the NYTimes has developed an iPad app that presents the Times exactly like their webpage but using H.264 instead of Flash. That explains why when Jobs loaded the web NYTimes at the demo we saw the missing flash icon. Anyone who thinks that was an unintentional accident doesn't know Jobs or Apple very well. These events are planned with military precision. No accident, a not so subtle lift of the middle finger to Adobe. However, once you have an iPad and you run the NYTimes App on the iPad you'll see the full NYTimes but with H.264 instead of Flash.

Regarding the iBooks, Somehow Andrew Ludwig added 2+2 and got 5. Apple's iBook store uses ePub as its format which is a standard format and can be read on a wide number of devices. Books from the Apple book store will play on any device that can read epub.

What Andrew misunderstood is that the only way to access Apple's new iBook bookstore is through an iPad or presumably an iPhone or iPod Touch. What's proprietary is the book store, not the book format. So anyone can log on to Amazon's bookstore with any device (more or less) but only iPads/iPhones/iPod Touches can logon to the iBook store.
post #34 of 175
Do you know all those empty holes in web-sites. Left by the missing Flash.

What would happen if Apple sold the space to Advertisers fill all those holes with alternative content?

C.
post #35 of 175
There is nothing worse than hitting a flash ad on my G5 Powermac. The fans kick in to full power mode- until I resize the window so that it is cropped out and it stops rendering, and the fans cycle down to normal. If it affects my G5 that much, I can't imagine what it would do to an iPhone/iPad.

I'd like a switch for Flash on/off (just for Hulu), but there is no way it would be added, as Apple's target audience has no clue what flash is and where it is used. Maybe Hulu should get on the HTML5 bandwagon.
post #36 of 175
I agree with Wiggin too.
I have no love for Flash or any proprietary code becoming part of the Web. Funny that while FSF was bashing Apple for the iPad, the organization ignored Adobe and its support of Flash.
John Gruber probably wrote the best defense for Apple not including Flash on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.
http://daringfireball.net/2010/01/apple_adobe_flash

Quote:
In other words, in Apples giant pile of aggregate crash reports from all app crashes on all Macs from all users who click the button to send these reports to Apple Flash accounts for more of them than anything else. That doesnt mean Flash somehow causes crashes in any various app. Presumably, most of the time its Safari or some other browser playing Flash content. And its worth noting that this doesnt necessarily mean Flash is particularly crash-prone or poorly engineered. Think of it as a formula like this:

total crashes = (crashing bugs) × (actual use)

Flashs number and severity of crashing bugs could well be somewhat low and it would still account for a large number of total crashes because its actually used all the time by any Mac user with Flash content playing in a web page. And, if Flash Player for Mac OS X actually is poorly-engineered overly-buggy code, well, thats even worse.

I hope Apple sticks to its guns and continues to deny Flash on these devices.
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post #37 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

I agree, and I wonder how long it will be before Adobe responds with a lawsuit or simply pulling it programs off the Mac.

Looking at the iPad, the future of locked down, dumbed down, no choice but what Steve says sort of computing, that Steve would be very happy if Adobe did pull their programs off the Mac.

Jesus, what the hell has gotten into him?

In the big picture, it spells the end of freedom and beginning of total control. But that's the 5-15 year plan.

Right now it just means the first widely popular closed OS.
----

I'd laugh pretty heartily if Adobe dropped Mac support all together. Wouldn't effect me at all since I use CS3 and have no plans or intention to ever upgrade. Ever.

CS4 was an insult to Adobe customers and has had the slowest adoption rate of any CS suite. I'm not interested in what they produce. They bought Macromedia only to destroy their few worthwhile products.
post #38 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniphage View Post

Do you know all those empty holes in web-sites. Left by the missing Flash.

What would happen if Apple sold the space to Advertisers fill all those holes with alternative content?

C.

While an interesting idea in theory, it would probably result in a lawsuit. Advertisers could claim that Apple is intentionally blocking flash ads only to turn it around and resell the space to someone else.

I'll take the empty spaces.
post #39 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by All Day Breakfast View Post

only iPads/iPhones/iPod Touches can logon to the iBook store.

I'd hope that any device running iTunes can log on to it too. The more portals, the more penetration.

I could like without the iBookstore on the Apple TV, but it should be accessible from every Apple computer, mobile device and iTunes installatio, just like the iTunes and App Stores.

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post #40 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Adobe will have to make a version of Flash just for Apple's devices? I don't think so, especially if there is no money involved.

Adobe will find it difficult to sell development tools for their "any environment" run time if it runs on progressively less of the popular environments. It is in Adobe's interest to push Flash Player, Apple's only incentive is potential increased sales from compatibility with existing web content; web content that in some notable cases (YouTube, Vimeo) seems to be migrating away from Flash.

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