So Adobe announced they were going to end Flash development on mobile devices (Android devices and the Playbook) on Wednesday. In a true 'Steve was right' moment, Adobe went on to add that "that makes HTML5 the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms."
Since then, it's fair to say that the reaction surrounding this has been rather...heated to say the least. So product manager at Adobe, Mike Chambers, has gone straight to his personal blog to provide some clarification on the decision and the reasons that ushered in this change of heart. It's a revealing-read through and through:
Chambers admitted that Flash "was not going to achieve the same ubiquity on mobile that it has on the desktop." What he's referring to is, of course, the rise of HTML5 on mobile platforms, which is much more widely supported on mobile browsers than Flash could ever hold a candle to. They also adressed the Apple/Flash divide on iOS.
Just to be very clear on this. No matter what we did, the Flash Player was not going to be available on Apple’s iOS anytime in the foreseeable future.
Adobe have accepted that in order to support iOS, both HTML5 and flash versions of the same content would need to be developed, which isn't exactly a beneficiary to the developer community. Flash also lent itself to fragmentation, as multiple manufacturers, chip makers and OSes, meaning that the option of a single web standard would be simpler, scalable and more sustainable.
Chambers didn't comment directly about what extra efforts Adobe will place in their HTML5 and Air developments; but he did go on to say that the company believes features that were unique to Flash are slowly trickling through to HTML5 standards. So, with this in mind, he's recommended Flash developers give HTML5 a long, hard look, as chances are the transition is going to be a fast one.
It's an interesting blog post. Check it out here.
I am the Founder and Editor-in-chief of New Rising Media. You can follow me on Twitter @MrJasonEngland.