Adobe rumored to be abandoning work on mobile Flash player

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Adobe has briefed its employees on the company's plans to abandon development of Flash player for mobile browsers in a blow to Google Android and Research in Motion PlayBook tablets, according to a new report.



ZDNet cited "sources close to Adobe" late Tuesday as claiming that the company will soon make the following announcement, possibly as early as Wednesday:

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.

Adobe's partners will reportedly receive an email briefing them on the fact that it is "stopping development on Flash Player for browsers on mobile," the report continued. The company will instead focus its efforts on mobile applications, desktop content "in and out of browser," and investments in HTML5.



The rumored announcement can largely be seen as a win for Apple and a loss for Android tablets and the Playbook. Competitors to the iPad and iPhone had originally touted Adobe Flash as a major selling point for their devices over Apple's mobile offerings, which have eschewed Flash. RIM had highlighted in videos the fact that its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet was Flash-capable.



Making the resource-intensive Flash work for low-power mobile situations has long been a thorn in Adobe's side. The company has encountered delays as it struggled to streamline Flash to run on mobile processors. Earlier this year, Motorola bragged that its Xoom tablet would come "fully Flash-enabled," but then went ahead and launched the device without initial Flash support, promising to add it later.



The end of mobile Flash could also be seen as a vindication of Apple's decision to steer clear of it. The late Steve Jobs famously called out Adobe for its struggles with Flash.



"Flash has not performed well on mobile devices. We have routinely asked Adobe to show us Flash performing well on a mobile device, any mobile device, for a few years now. We have never seen it," Jobs said in an open letter last April.



"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."



In recent months, Adobe has moved towards HTML5. For instance, in September, the company announced that its Flash Media Server product would support the delivery of HTML5 video to Apple's iPhone and iPad devices. Adobe also unveiled this summer work on an Edge web development tool that will enable creation of Flash-style animations through HTML5.



Adobe's decision to drop development of mobile Flash comes as the company has initiated a round of layoffs due to restructuring. According to a press release on Tuesday, the software maker is aiming to focus more on "Digital Media and Digital Marketing" and will cut 750 full-time positions in North America and Europe as a result.
«134

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 64
    tylerk36tylerk36 Posts: 1,037member
    News flash! Not!
  • Reply 2 of 64
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,078member
    Flash was never suited for mobile applications regardless of what the Flashtards think. It was doomed from the get-go. Finally Adobe realizes it's better to bite the bullet and discontinue a dead technology than to continue milking a dying cow.



    Queue the flash apologists and their crybaby whining as to why this means less "choice" for the consumer... </sarcasm>
  • Reply 3 of 64
    tsatsa Posts: 129member
    Hm, I always thought Flash worked perfectly on my Nokia N900, but my demands are probably pretty low.
  • Reply 4 of 64
    Nooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!
  • Reply 5 of 64
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,152member
    But Flash is awesome and any phone without Flash sucks
  • Reply 6 of 64
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,472member
    This is the first of what will be many things I wish Steve Jobs was around to see. Adobe certainly gave Steve a hard time for saying mobile is not the proper place for Flash. Glad they finally woke up and agreed with him.
  • Reply 7 of 64
    tsatsa Posts: 129member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TFA


    Adobe's partners will reportedly receive an email briefing them on the fact that it is "stopping development on Flash Player for browsers on mobile," the report continued. The company will instead focus its efforts on mobile applications, desktop content "in and out of browser," and investments in HTML5.



    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.
  • Reply 8 of 64
    This is a win win for the future of mobile computing, as well as Adobe. Flash was a dud. Good riddance. Long live H.264 and HTML 5.
  • Reply 9 of 64
    sipadansipadan Posts: 107member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Otoh, the iPhone experience would have been worse with shorter battery time and laggy interface response due to Flash.
  • Reply 10 of 64
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,078member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Looks like you've been proven wrong.
  • Reply 11 of 64
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,989member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Any time I come across a site that doesn't work on my iPhone due to Flash, I lodge a support ticket explaining why I will NEVER visit their site again and how I will NEVER spend my money on whatever it is they are promoting.



    I often embellish my ticket with links to sites of their competitors whose sites are more accessible due to being based on open standards.



    The reference in the article and I quote;- "Some of our source code licensees may opt to continue working on and releasing their own implementations" shows that Flash is not as "open" as some would have us believe.
  • Reply 12 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sipadan View Post


    Otoh, the iPhone experience would have been worse with shorter battery time and laggy interface response due to Flash.



    flash is on demand...it's not always on.
  • Reply 13 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post


    This is the first of what will be many things I wish Steve Jobs was around to see. Adobe certainly gave Steve a hard time for saying mobile is not the proper place for Flash. Glad they finally woke up and agreed with him.



    I stated the obvious when this topic came up many times over the last few years: Steve Jobs KNEW, almost without a doubt, that Adobe would NEVER be able to show Flash mobile working sufficiently.



    Why does everyone just assume that SJ shot off comments "from the hip" so to speak? The engineers at Apple invariably tried to get Flash working, reverse-engineered at some point or even with help from Adobe, and reported back to SJ, "Nope... not gonna happen any time soon".



    Understanding the brilliance of SJ is realizing that he was incredibly smart and thorough, and an obsessive bordering on the psychopathic, as all geniuses are. If we could ask him, I bet he even paged through the Flash code himself. Remember: this guy started NeXt as well, which was more than anything, a programming platform. SJ understood good... and bad code... when he saw it.



    SJ was a one-of-a-kind entrepreneur, innovator, visionary, and CEO... because he worked incredibly hard at all of them.



    Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen should have taken Apple's and SJ's advice and offer to help, considering he knew both being a former employee at Apple.



    I imagine finally killing Flash at this point in time, had mostly to do with ego and face-saving. If SJ was still alive... would "Shanty" have pulled the plug on Flash now? Why do I think the answer to that question is "no"... and that due to ego, he would still be pulling the wool over the eyes of his "partners" re: Flash mobile performance, updates, etc., just to save face.
  • Reply 14 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Flash does need to die, that I agree with...but I like having the option of activating it when necessary...



    HTML 5+ is the future, definitely...and all major players are supporting its advancement...but this does suck IMO





    on the other hand I can see HTML 5 adoption increasing rapidly.
  • Reply 15 of 64
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Oh how wrong you are!



    Address your complaints to the fools still programming their websites with it... not at Apple for not including it.



    Also... you do realize that Flash (and Reader) contain the largest security risks on any device, don't you? Would you really like that problem on your phone?
  • Reply 16 of 64
    sipadansipadan Posts: 107member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AbsoluteDesignz View Post


    flash is on demand...it's not always on.



    Yeah, when it's on is when the issues appear.. strangely.
  • Reply 17 of 64
    realisticrealistic Posts: 1,117member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tsa View Post


    So as a replacement of Flash we get some vague promises. I'd rather have Flash then. At least it works. I have an iPhone but I find the lack of Flask quite irritating. That is compensated for by other things, but the iPhone experience would have been better with Flash.



    Flash has been dead or dying for quite some time now. Seeing anything or anybody we love die is tough to accept but we eventually learn to accept it in time.
  • Reply 18 of 64
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    I'm glad for investors who no longer have to worry about Adobe throwing money into a doomed project. I'm hopeful this focus on native apps and open web standards will yield positive results for the company.
  • Reply 19 of 64
    d-ranged-range Posts: 396member
    All I can say is



  • Reply 20 of 64
    Oh noes! Now we'll never get the "full web"!
Sign In or Register to comment.