The Flash coders at Adobe have been very busy folks and this week they’ve demonstrated full versions of Flash 10 running on Nokia, Windows Mobile and Google Android devices. Adobe wants to get the latest full version of Flash running on all mobile smartphones and frankly that’s what we as users want too. Pick up a new smartphone on the market and the first question you’ll hear a geek ask is "does it do Flash?" because it is becoming a big portion of our web browsing experience. It is great to see Flash growing up and coming to the little screen.
Apple on the other hand seems to be saying "no Flash for you!" and although Adobe indicated they are working on a version of Flash for the iPhone it is unlikely we will ever see it come to the swipe screen. Wired opines that Apple cannot let Flash appear on the iPhone because it is a platform for developers and as such takes the user experience out of Apple’s hands. We know they hate that and Wired feels they hate it enough to never let it happen. They point out that even the iPhone developer’s SDK prohibits Flash from appearing in the App Store:
Allowing Flash — which is a development platform of its own — wouldjust be too dangerous for Apple, a company that enjoys exerting totaldominance over its hardware and the software that runs on it. Flashhas evolved from being a mere animation player into a multimediaplatform capable of running applications of its own. That means Flashwould open a new door for application developers to get their softwareonto the iPhone: Just code them in Flash and put them on a web page. Inso doing, Flash would divertbusiness from the App Store, as well as enable publishers to distributemusic, videos and movies that couldcompete with the iTunes Store.
Apple’s well aware of these problems, which iswhy the company wrote a clause in its iPhone developers’ Terms of Service agreement that prohibits Flash from appearing on the iPhone:
"An Application may not itself install or launch other executable codeby any means, including without limitation through the use of a plug-inarchitecture, calling other frameworks, other APIs or otherwise," reads clause 3.3.2 of the iPhone SDK agreement, which was recently published on WikiLeaks. "No interpreted code may be downloaded and used in an Application exceptfor code that is interpreted and run by Apple’s Published APIs andbuilt-in interpreter(s)."
Let’s hope that Apple is not that unbending as Flash has become such a standard that the iPhone will be harmed long-term with its omission. That’s our take on it anyway.