Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Adobe kills off mobile Flash

It is hard to believe that this was such a point of controversy – should Apple and other mobile device makers incorporate Flash support? For so many tech writers this was the sign that Apple didn't know what it was doing, that the iPhone and other mobile devices would fail because they did not support Flash.

As they say, that was then, this is now.

If you haven't heard, Adobe Systems is killing off mobile Flash and will instead concentrate on HTML5.

John Gruber of Daring Fireball was quick to jump on the story:
Apple didn’t win. Everybody won. Flash hasn’t been superseded in mobile by any sort of Apple technology. It’s been superseded by truly open web technologies. Dumping Flash will make Android better, it will make BlackBerrys better, it will make the entire web better. iOS users have been benefitting from this ever since day one, in June 2007.
The issue, of course, was always performance and security. For Mac users, and those with iOS devices, the problem was not about Apple versus Adobe, it was about crashes, power and battery drains, and security – fix Flash was most often the call.

Now Adobe will move on to delivering better technology which is a good thing for all mobile device owners. Unfortunately, a lot of Adobe employees, 750 it is reported, will be losing their positions in the move, let's hope we find them doing other work real soon.

Google said it would be dropping its support of its Gmail app for BlackBerry. This is a week after launching, and then withdrawing its new Gmail app for iPhone.

"Users may continue to use the app, if installed, however it will not be supported by Google, or available for download starting November 22," Google said in a blog post. Google will avoid the whole app solution for Gmail by pointing users to its mobile website for Gmail.

To be honest, I've never seen the purpose for these apps anyway as users can add their Gmail account to the iPhone's Mail app with no real difficulty – why use a separate app? I have to assume the same thing can be done on BlackBerry devices.