Why Adobe decided to Stop Developing Flash for Mobile Devices

  • 11/11/2011 AT 12:00 by It's a Gadget Staff
  • Gadgets, Mobile Phones, Platforms

Adobe Flash LogoIt has been a tough road for Adobe lately. Not only were they struggling to optimize Flash’s less than optimal performance on mobile devices but they were also constantly battling HTML5 which was steadily gaining the upper hand. However Adobe has finally conceded; they will no longer be optimizing Flash for mobile devices and will concentrate all of their efforts on apps and desktop. Adobe will also be pushing hard to contribute to HTML5.

For those of you wondering what exactly Adobe said then here is the official announcement made by Adobe regarding this new course for their company:

“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.”

So why exactly did Adobe stop pushing for Flash optimization on mobile phones? Well there were multiple reasons but here are the main points that you should be aware of:

  1. Flash simply didn’t work well on mobile devices.  Even with the amount of time needed to optimize Flash it just didn’t measure up to HTML5 despite the fact that it arrived last year. Upon its arrival there were multiple tests done to evaluate how it compared to its opponent and it didn’t fare so well. For a few, Flash provided decent quality videos, however for the rest it was poor.
  2. Flash didn’t have the support HTML5 has. This was another deciding factor in the decision to stop working on Flash. A big blow in their lack of support was Apple’s decision to not use Flash on any of their devices and this was announced with a famous letter by Steve Jobs himself.
  3. HTML5 was gaining support while Flash was losing theirs. There was a report that did research on the amount of phones that would be using HTML5 and it estimated that more than 2 billion devices would be using HTML5 by 2016.  Due to the fact that HTML5 isn’t ‘owned’ by any company, its being embraced everywhere and most of the biggest names in the electronic world are supporting it.

So who exactly is making the innovative switch from Adobe Flash to HTML5? On top of the ever popular YouTube, Vudu, Pandora, SlideShare, Cloud Reader, Vimeo, and even Twitter, Adobe itself is making the switch! There are many more, but those big names who have already switched over have definitely paved the way towards innovation and will lead others to make the switch as well.

What does the future hold? Adobe was incredibly optimistic in their report about the new direction they will be taking for mobile devices. Not only can we expect to see better performing phones and tablets, but now Adobe will be fully concentrating on other projects. Developers and content publishers will be overjoyed at the options given to them, especially with HTML5 now being unrivaled and fully supported for mobile devices.

Source: Adobe Blog


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