Flash for smartphones coming soon
The iPhone will still be the odd one out when Flash support comes to most major smartphone platforms.
Support for smartphones is emphasized in the latest version of Adobe’s Flash player, version 10.1, which was introduced today. Palm’s WebOS and Microsoft’s Windows Mobile will get public betas later this year. Betas for Android, BlackBerry, and Symbian phones will follow in early 2010. Phones that support Flash 10.1 should be updated over the air, with WebOS-based phones expected to go first, reports PaidContent.
Flash player support is desirable in smartphones, because it would give users access to video sites such as Hulu and game sites such as Miniclip and Newgrounds. However, in the past Flash has proven too processor- and battery-intensive for mobile use, leading the major smartphone platforms to avoid it . Some phones do offer a stripped-down version of the player, called Flash Lite, but it’s still not capable of running Hulu or large-scale games.
Adobe says the latest version of Flash player increases mobile performance by 87 percent, and cuts memory consumption by 55 percent. Developers can also take advantage of device-specific features, such as multi-touch gestures, virtual keyboards and accelerometers. The prospect of Flash game arcades specifically designed for, say, Android phones, has me excited.
There are drawbacks to Flash support, however. Web sites sometimes use Flash-based advertisements, adding longer load times and more intrusions to mobile Internet browsing. And I could certainly do without all the Web sites that are written entirely in Flash — I was kind of hoping the lack of Flash support on mobile phones would slowly bring about those sites’ decline.
Still, I’ll take those negatives in exchange for the ability to watch Hulu and play Flash games. For iPhone users, though, it’s still a matter of “if” instead of “when,” as Apple has resisted Flash due to its resource requirements. There are also suspicions that Apple wants to snuff out potential competition with its App Store, but if other phones can make Flash an attractive feature, Apple will have to respond somehow.
1 Comments on Flash for smartphones coming soon
- Posts: 420
- Posted on: 06 Oct 09 02:15
Someone should produce a better open source alternative to this Adobe junk. Flash has done more to stuff-up users web browsers than any other plugin made.
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