Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Skyfire to bring Flash video to the iPhone and iPad by transcoding to HTML5; app set to launch tomorrow

Ithought I should pass on this little tid bit, first reported yesterday by CNN: a developer has come with a nice little work around that will bring Flash video content to Apple's iOS devices. Skyfire will apparently launch a new app tomorrow morning that it says will bring Flash video content to the iPhone and iPad.

The Skyfire app works on top of the existing built-in Safari web browser found on all iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices. It recognizes Flash content on a web page and immediately begins to recode the content for viewing in a new window in HTML5. The demo video below demonstrates this pretty nicely. This solution, though, will only work with video content, not games and advertising.

I imagine the way I would use this app would be when I encounter a site with video I want to watch, I would copy the URL, fire up Skyfire and then paste in the URL.

For publishers, this is a small, but interesting step towards Flash on Apple mobile devices. If you only use Flash for video content this will allow your video content to be seen on more devices. It's not a great solution for most major publishers who would probably go the route of the NYT and go ahead and encode all their video of HTML5 viewing. But for small publishers, if this app is widely downloaded (it will cost users $2.99) this is at least a stop gap solution.