Adobe recently announced that it has stopped working on Flash for iPhone, which caused some uproar among iPhone users.
Steve Jobs has provided six reasons for not allowing Flash on its iPhone OS devices.
The Full Web:
Steve Jobs points out that Adobe’s claim that iPhone OS devices cannot access 75% of the video on the web is not accurate as almost all the videos on the web is available in H.264 format, which works on iPhone OS devices.
He admits that users can’t play Flash games on their iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch but highlights that there are 50,000 game and entertainment iPhone apps available in the App Store of which many are free.
Reliability, Security, and Performance:
Jobs points out to a report by Symantec, which highlighted that Flash had one of the worst security records last year.
He claims that Flash is the number one reason for Mac crashes that have persisted even after working with Adobe to fix the problems for many years.
Steve Jobs also highlighted that though Adobe has mentioned that they will bring Flash on the smartphone in early 2009, we still haven’t seen it work well on the mobile.
Steve Jobs explains that to preserve battery life it is important to decode videos in hardware, which is possible with chips used in most smartphones as they have a decoder called H.264 rather than decoding videos using software. Apple has observed that H.264 videos play for up to 10 hours, while videos decoded in software play for less than 5 hours.
Jobs points out that Flash was designed for PCs using mice and it is not compatible with Apple’s revolutionary multi-touch iPhone OS as there is no concept of a rollover, which is widely used in many Flash based websites.
Third-Party Cross platform development Development Tool:
The most important reason for not allowing developers to use cross platform development tools is because Apple believes that developers end up developing sub-standard iPhone apps as the cross platform development tools would be slower to adopt the changes and improvements that are rolled out by Apple.
Steve Jobs concludes by saying:
New open standards created in the mobile era, such as HTML5, will win on mobile devices (and PCs too). Perhaps Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind.
You can read the full text of Steve Jobs’ open letter by following this link.
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