A couple of days ago Adobe Systems Inc. announced that they face a real challenge in creating a version of its Flash video software for Apple Inc’s iPhone. Chief Executive Officer of Adobe Shantanu Narayan said;
“It’s a hard technical challenge, and that’s part of the reason Apple and Adobe are collaborating.” On January 30th Narayan said, in a Bloomberg Television interview from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, “The ball is in our court. The onus is on us to deliver“
Adobe’s Flash, used to view online video and animation, is installed on 98% of the world’s personal computers. While the software is on more than 800 million handsets, it isn’t yet available on the iPhone. Apple CEO Steve Jobs said last March that Flash runs too slowly for the iPhone, and the slimmed down version, Flash Lite, “Isn’t capable enough to be used with the web“. Jobs then called on Adobe to write a third version of Flash, in addition to the software already available for PC’s and mobile phones.
It’s not clear what might have caused this change of heart, though Adobe announced back in November that they were partnering with ARM to create optimized implementation of Flash specifically for the ARM11 family of processors. The Apple iPhone is based on these processors, so in the future we may see the iPhone benefit from this collaboration.
Like many, Adobe is feeling the pinch of the current economic “funk” which caused Adobe’s shares to decline 50% last year. Now Adobe is facing a new challenge in the mobile-video market from Microsoft Corp, the worlds largest software manufacturer. Microsoft is trying to persuade more web-site owners to use its SilverLight in place of Flash.
Flash is basically the only thing keeping the iPhone from “delivering the real web in our hands“, and with this new development, we could see it become a reality in the near future.
Source thanks to Bloomberg