Adobe stops Flash mobile dev (or how I finally found something to write about)

Haha, yeah, haven’t wrote much lately, not that I don’t want to, I just don’t have anything to write about, but now Adobe did give me something. So, they will stop working on the mobile version of the Flash player. A lot of people talked to me about it this morning, with big grins in their faces, like saying: “See, see, it’s dead already”. Damn people are clueless sometimes, haha. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal right now, right now I mean, but I think it could mean way more in the future.

Ya, right now, on a phone, with its screen size, it is not the best way to consume Flash rich experiences like Aldo Shoes for Life. The screen is too small, you don’t get as much as what you get on the desktop. But the same goes for HTML rich experiences; would you interact with the Wilderness Downtown on a mobile phone? I don’t think so. Where I think it is more problematic, is on tablets, where the screen has more real estate. Most rich experiences would work pretty well on that. The problem is that the only tablet worth the name is the iPad (well that will change in time) so no one could see rich flash experiences on them and realize that it is working quite well.

So short term, no biggie, doesn’t really change much, nobody was doing Flash sites for mobile anyway. Long term, it’s hard to say. Phones are gonna get bigger screens that I am sure off, be it foldable screens or some other innovation, screens will get bigger. Also, there will be more tablets out there and their uses will be more defined. For that alone, it would be nice to have Flash on mobile. Then, there is the new mobile application paradigm, where instead of building web experiences and apps, you build native apps. I don’t know if this is a trend that will last forever. I mean the desktop is slowly moving toward web and cloud, shouldn’t mobile do the same too? So I think it might be a mistake to stop mobile development.

But I also understand a bit, I mean Adobe was already developing 3 Flash players : PC, MAC, Linux. Now with mobile, it would have to develop one for every mobile operating. So here it is, my views on the topic, one more in the sea of web.

  1. #1 by Chris - November 9th, 2011 at 18:23

    I didn’t see anything on the Aldo Shoes for Life site that couldn’t be accomplished using HTML, CSS, and JS (and gracefully degrade down to a mobile version). Likewise, I think you’re wrong about things like The Wilderness Downtown on a mobile phone. Obviously that wasn’t created for mobile devices, but that doesn’t mean equally rich experiences couldn’t happen on a mobile device.

    We probably won’t be able to do everything Flash can do using standard web technologies for awhile, but you can already do a lot of what Flash does. Whether or not Flash is going away any time soon, it’s popularity has peaked. It’s all downhill from here. Come to terms with that.

  2. #2 by James - November 10th, 2011 at 08:23

    Adobe will be a leader in Flash and HTML5, I’m sure everyone didn’t know we can have the best of both world! I will salute Adobe team as it going to appear in many devices, AIR for high performance and HTML5 make it fast for mobile devices and less costly to deploy.

    In sum, Adobe has truly combined the art and science, something that others software company never did it successfully. We have more confident for Adobe to take the important role to improve HTML5 specifications.

  3. #3 by zedia.net - November 10th, 2011 at 13:17

    @Chris
    As for building Aldo Shoes for Life using HTML techs, I agree it could be done, but at what cost? It uses a lot of video, so to do so in HTML you would have to encode the videos (probably around 10-15 files) in at least 2 formats, it also uses a lot of audio, which is also a problem. And if that wasn’t enough you have to test every aspect in every browsers. I don’t know for you, but I kinda don’t want to waste my time managing that and just use it to build cool stuff. The last thing I want to bring out is JavaScript, it is not where ActionScript is at all. We could have built sites like that back in Flash 8 but no one was doing that kind of quality, but ActionScript 3 came about and that is when you started seeing way more complex sites done, because it made it easier to do them. Javascript really need to be improved.

    As for Wilderness Downtown and experiences on the phone, I don’t think they are worth it, there is not enough space to do something really engaging. Aside from playing a video or displaying some info, you can’t really do something interactive. On a tablet, that’s different.

  4. #4 by Aristophrenia - November 11th, 2011 at 00:25

    @Chris
    Chris, you sound so uninformed. Flash is now re-positioned as Web HD, not just high def video, games, 3d etc, but high definition applications as well – while html5 and javascript etc have taken on the RIA mantra – in otherwords the web has moved on completely from where html5 is at, in other words, the web is now where flash is at, and that has always been the case and cant see it changing.

    I am guttted at the decision as well zedia – considering the plethora of dual core and now quad core devices coming out its ridiculous. I was plugging a blue tooth keyboard and monitor into my nokia N95 almost 6 years ago and using it for full screen document editing, email, internet, video chat etc.

  5. #5 by Aristophrenia - November 11th, 2011 at 00:27

    Also: -

    I am hoping that their hinting at third parties continuing to develop for the plugin means that soon mobile phones will be able to handle desktop browsers – cool – which means they will again handle flash – the only issue being Adobe adopting the player to handle the video cards on the phones for stage3d – that would be awesome.

  6. #6 by Sébastien ( Webdesigner – Flash developer) - November 26th, 2011 at 20:45

    The Wilderness Downtown is nice but doesn’t work on FireFox :-(

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