Adobe says iPhone Flash player ready ‘soon’ – if Apple approves

“Speaking at the Flash On The Beach (FOTB) conference in Brighton, Sr. Director of Engineering at Adobe Systems Paul Betlem was asked by an audience member for an update on Flash support for iPhone users,” Slash Lane reports for AppleInsider.

“Betlem reportedly responded by saying his team is ‘working on Flash on the iPhone’ but given that the iPhone is a closed and closely guarded system, Apple will have final say over whether the application makes its way onto the App Store,” Lane reports. “Should Apple approve the software, it would be available ‘in a very short time,’ Betlem added.”

“Earlier this year, Apple chief executive Steve Jobs panned Flash on the iPhone, arguing that its fragmented architecture offered no middle ground suitable for use on his company’s mobile products,” Lane reports. “Specifically, he said Flash Lite ‘is not capable of being used with the web’ because it doesn’t support the same types of Flash media accessible by the traditional version of Flash player on the PC. On the otherhand, the version built for PC was dubbed a resource hog that ‘performs too slow to be useful’ on the iPhone.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “MacVicta” for the heads up.]


  1. I would love to see Flash be less prominent on the web. It’s not the best solution for video, period. And once you figure that out, it becomes much less of a “necessity” for anything on the web. Flash sites are stupid, slow, unintuitive, etc.

    About the only thing it does well is games and cartoons. Stick with that Adobe. Better yet, die. Or make some really great, fast, unbloated, reasonably priced applications.

  2. Hope they refuse it. That’s the only hope to see other forms of video on the web in the foreseeable future. As for flash’s other uses, again, there is a chance that non-proprietary things might get some exposure and consequent improvement. At the moment, any improvement relies on Adobe, and that’s not good because their priority is Adobe, not web development. And Microsoft’s competing crap, if it takes off, will be just like another burger king to compete with all the other crap.

    We need innovation and improvement maybe, but just things that work in the existing evolving web structure without breaking it would be better than Adobe and Microsoft’s efforts so far.

  3. Like it or not, Flash is needed on the iPhone. It’s used on a huge number of websites to deliver video. Not to mention the ton of video games available. Which probably explains why Apple doesn’t want Flash. It will cut into game sales at the App Store.

  4. Web standards and Javascript engine speeds are progressing to the point where Flash will no longer be needed. The upcoming HTML5 (some of which is being phased in even now) includes dedicated, standardized video and audio tags. Plugins could still be used to play back the audio or video content, but the use of standard media codecs (mp3, H.264, etc.) would eliminate the reliance on one specific plugin and its non-standard media formats.

    Hopefully, Apple will continue their push for open standards, instead of Adobe’s (or Microsoft’s, or anyone else’s) closed, proprietary solutions.

  5. Apple has always viewed flash like another junk windows media player, floppy drive, real player etc. Useless and outdated technology that serves no purpose just like java. So don’t be offended, java blows too.

  6. @obtusegoose

    Your name fits you well. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” /> The earliest apps for Apple’s iPhone (which Apple heartily promoted, mind you) were web-based apps and games, which Apple made no profit from. Those games used normal HTML standards, instead of Adobe’s proprietary plugin, so Flash clearly isn’t really *needed* for web games.

    And Flash was pressed into duty as a video platform because it was the least-common-denominator video player which worked on all platforms (since Microsoft was too busy trying to gimp Quicktime on Windows to pay attention to Adobe quietly nipping off in the other direction).

    This status quo sadly won’t be changing anytime soon, but there’s a broader push to use H.264 for video on the internet, instead of Adobe’s proprietary .flv format. Since Adobe is no doubt using the status quo to attempt to push their influence further, I sincerely hope Apple continues to shun Flash for the iPhone (and considering Google isn’t too keen on Flash either, they have at least one ally in that fight).

  7. If you don’t have Flash, you don’t have “the whole internet.”

    I would welcome Flash on my iPhone, but of course, I would also want the option to be able to turn it off.

    I don’t care if it comes from the app store, or Cydia. Either way, it’s better than no option at all.

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