Adobe announced via a press release today that it would cease development of the Flash Player for smartphones and tablets, and would shift its focus to HTML5 support for those devices. This decision is due at least in part to Apple's refusal to allow Flash on iOS, making HTML5 the de-facto standard for developers wishing to target the highest number of platforms possible with the least amount of development effort.

Adobe says that it will now focus on enabling Flash apps on mobile devices through its Adobe AIR software, rather than developing plug-ins for specific platforms. The final version of the Flash Player plugin for mobile devices will be 11.1, which will come to Android and the BlackBerry PlayBook soon - following its release, updates will fix bugs and security problems rather than add new features.

Though Flash will likely live on in Adobe's portfolio for the forseeable future (Adobe's announcement confirms that Flash Player 12 is already in development), this change of course marks the beginning of a slow fade from relevance on the desktop as HTML5 becomes more feature-rich and browsers' implementations of it improve. Adobe itself will speed this transition along when it releases the final version of Adobe Edge, its forthcoming HTML5 development software.

Source: Adobe

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  • teng029 - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    This sh*t just got serious... Reply
  • B3an - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    This is likely because of Microsoft and little to do with Apple. If Adobe simply are not allowed to run Flash on major mobile OS's then they have very little choice but to do this.

    Metro's IE version in Windows 8 will not allow any plugins, so no Flash support. The user could always switch the the desktop on these devices and then use any existing desktop browser with Flash support but this isn't at all ideal on a tablet. The desktop wont work so well with touch and MS want people using Metro all the time on tablets. I'm sure Win 8 tablets will end up selling millions as a full OS on a tablet will finally make these things useful and not pointless toys.

    The perofrmance of Flash is obviously better than HTML5 though, so are it's capabilities for gaming. Since Flash Player 10.2 "stage Video" feature it has the best in class video performance with the lowest CPU load compared anything else out there (but the video player itself has to enable the feature). Theres also tons of videos on youtube demonatrating the iFad being crippled by extremely simple HTML5 animations while Flash is running complex games at 60FPS and even doing this on slower Android devices.
    Reply
  • name99 - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    "The perofrmance of Flash is obviously better than HTML5 though, so are it's capabilities for gaming. Since Flash Player 10.2 "stage Video" feature it has the best in class video performance with the lowest CPU load compared anything else out there (but the video player itself has to enable the feature)."

    A large part of the complaint regarding Flash has to do with its extraordinarily expensive IDLE TIME costs. This is what makes it slow down web pages (with ads and what-not) on mobile (and desktops)

    All the whining in the world about how great their video capabilities are is not going to change this --- it simply reinforces the fact that Adobe and their supporters would rather complain about non-existent issues than deal with the complaints of the real world. It's like I keep telling you your code uses too much damn memory, and you constantly reply by ignoring that and telling me how it does a great job of using multiple threads --- maybe true, but irrelevant.

    Well, as of today, Adobe has moved into the real world camp --- but some of their supporters appear unwilling to follow them.
    Reply
  • ananduser - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    Why did Epic recently port their latest unreal engine for Flash 11?. And Crytek is also interested in a similar endeavor. Not sure how Epic could have ported their latest jewel to the "humble" HTML5. Reply
  • DarkShift - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    Look, if there's nothing to be redrawn, the Flash Player will not consume CPU cycles. Where did you hear that it would do so? Flash can also change its framerate dynamically if needed.

    For heavier stuff Flash Player can render much more visual content than web browsers. I have tested this myself. JS animations are basically slow and bloated.

    I wonder why people won't whine about poor performance of jquery etc. in every browser related news article? Obviously same level of performance should be required from HTML5 ;)

    If you read the article, it says that Adobe will focus to AIR as platform for Flash content in mobile.
    Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Monday, November 14, 2011 - link

    "This is likely because of Microsoft and little to do with Apple."

    There are hundreds of millions of iOS devices and every video site has been delivering non-Flash video to them for almost four years, long before Metro was announced to be HTML5 only. Even live video streaming from TwitchTV and MLG are working on iOS at this point.

    Once again, your fanboy reality distortion shows.

    Either way, good on Microsoft for doing the right thing. Flash was already on the way out for years, it was a solution for problems that were being solved by HTML5 and AJAX, and now that video (aside from DRM) is taken care of there is little reason anymore for it.

    Power inefficient and one of the few vectors for malware on Windows, glad to see it go.
    Reply
  • solipsism - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    "This decision is due at least in part to Apple's refusal to allow Flash on iOS"

    Surely this sped up the process, but this was inevitable. Even today, nearing the end of 2011, Adobe has had trouble bringing a good version of Flash to all other mobile platforms even if you exclude iOS.
    Reply
  • tipoo - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    Why does your title always say your name? And are you the same guy from Appleinsider?

    /offtopic
    Reply
  • solipsism - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    The Subject issue appears to be an artifact of using my 1Password setup. I'll look into that.

    Yes.
    Reply
  • Andrew.a.cunningham - Wednesday, November 09, 2011 - link

    If I wanted to be snarky, I'd say that Adobe has had trouble bringing a good version of Flash *anywhere*, but that's not entirely fair of me... I've mostly been fine with it on the PC/Mac since GPU acceleration came in 10.1.

    Flash's biggest sin has been how behind the times it has been for the last few years - things like GPU acceleration, 64-bit support, and more have come only in the last couple of years as a response to competitive pressure, and it's definitely too little too late from my perspective.
    Reply

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