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Adobe pull plug on Mobile Flash Player

The war of Flash is over, and Apple may have emerged victorious. Adobe has backed down and is putting a stop to Flash Player development for mobile phones and tablets.

The company now plans to focus its efforts on developing HTML5, an open standard that works across all platforms.

The step-down marks the end of a dispute between Adobe and Apple over the use of Flash on Apple’s mobile devices. Apple refused to use the software, claiming it sapped battery life and wasn’t designed for use on touch screens.

Steve Jobs was a particularly vocal detractor of Flash. Responding to calls for Apple Mobile devices to support flash in 2010, Jobs wrote:  “We have routinely asked Adobe to show us Flash performing well on a mobile device, any mobile device, for a few years now. We have never seen it. Flash was designed for PCs using mice, not for touch screens using fingers.”

Despite Apple’s objections, other smartphones and tablets do support Flash, but users have often had to take a hit on the battery life and longer loading times.

Blackberry support

Adobe will continue to support Android and Blackberry, which use Flash, but will only offer bug fixes and security updates.

In a statement released to ZDNet, Adobe said: “Our future work with Flash on mobile devices will be focused on enabling Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for all the major app stores. We will no longer adapt Flash Player for mobile devices to new browser, OS version or device configurations.

“Some of our source code licensees may opt to continue working on and releasing their own implementations. We will continue to support the current Android and PlayBook configurations with critical bug fixes and security updates.”

The company will also continue work on Adobe Edge, which pulls together HTML5, Javascript and CSS to power cross-platform apps and widgets.


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