Adobe CEO: iPad’s Days are Numbered

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Apple’s iPad is doomed to fall to competing tablets, and that day is coming soon, according to Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen. He shared that bit of precognition, along with some other thoughts, this week in an interview at the AllThingsD D9 conference.

“What you saw with smartphones hitting an inflection point with Android, you’ll see it again with tablets,” Mr. Narayen said. “There will be another 20 tablets that will come by the end of the year that will push the industry in different directions.”

Flash is brining the iPad down, man!Adobe’s Narayen: The iPad will fall to Flash-running tablets

He sees Flash support on Android tablets, RIM’s PlayBook, and HP’s webOS-based tablets that aren’t on the market yet as a key component in the looming downfall of the iPad. Apple’s iPad, along with the iPhone and iPod touch don’t support Adobe’s Flash multimedia platform, and likely never will.

Apple’s decision to support HTML 5 instead of Flash in iOS was strictly a business decision, according to Mr. Narayen. “People talked about the fact that they thought it was a technology issue, and I think it’s become fairly clear over the last year that it’s not about the technology,” he said. “It’s about a business model issue. It’s about control of a platform. It’s the control of the App Store that’s really at issue here.”

From Apple’s perspective, however, staying away from Flash is a smart move because of poor performance and ongoing security issues. Flash support on mobile devices is limited compared to desktop and laptop computers, too, and some Flash interface features don’t translate to touch displays since they require mouse movements.

Those arguments didn’t stop Mr. Narayen from claiming Flash is still a critical platform to support on mobile devices. “The value proposition Flash has is that we allow people to author programs once and get them to as many devices as possible. We’ve done that with Android,” he said.

What Adobe hasn’t done, however, is show that Flash performance on mobile devices is on par with computers, or that battery life isn’t compromised on smartphones and tablets running Flash.

The Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg, who was interviewing Mr. Narayen, didn’t seemed to be swayed by his arguments. 

“I have yet to test a single one where Flash works really well, I’m sorry,” Mr. Mossberg said. “[Flash] struggles on those Android devices.”

Relying on Flash as the hammer to bring down the iPad from its top position in the tablet market may leave Mr. Narayen sorry, too. Apple currently holds the majority of the tablet market, and Flash for mobile devices isn’t drawing in positive reviews.

So far, Adobe’s Flash for mobile devices doesn’t seem to be living up to expectations, and in some cases isn’t even available on tablets where it was promised. The iPad may eventually lose its top spot in the market to the combined offerings on Google’s Android platform, but it doesn’t seem likely that Flash will be a major player in that game.

Comments

Bryan Chaffin

Ladies and gentlemen, behold the concept of denial elevated to the highest art form.

Tiger

I think we’ve discovered the long lost fourth Stooge. Hasn’t he realized that Apple could use the iCloud to deliver server side decoding or translation of Flash to iDevices in a different format and never have to install the software ON the device itself?

Oh wait, that would be giving him too much credit. DOH!!!

geoduck

What you saw with smartphones hitting an inflection point with Android, you?ll see it again with tablets,

Oh yeah because you almost NEVER see iPhones any more.

It?s about control of a platform.

No it’s about customer experience. Apple lets other Adobe products on iOS because they are not resource hogs, don’t crash regularly, and aren’t malware vectors. Make quality and you will get in. make crap and you won’t

Apple?s decision to support HTML 5 instead of Flash in iOS was strictly a business decision

Such a bad decision that Adobe now makes HTML5 authoring tools.

It’s pitiful when one of the industries old bulls tries to expound on what’s wrong with Apple. This one deserves to be in the Apple Death Knell Counter. It’s that moronic.

wab95

Many thanks, Jeff.

I needed some comic relief this afternoon.

As for Mr Narayen’s predictions, unless he’s been consulting with pre-cogs, it might be prudent to first actually get more of these tablets to market, and then discuss their capacity to thrash the iPad, not that it can’t be done.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

And once again, a discussion of Flash that fails to recognize all the things it is. Tiger, for example, says it’s a video format, calls the guy names, and fails to recognize that Flash is also a multi-platform, multi-device API for creating applications.

Mossberg’s critique simply ignores the fact that Flash developers can specifically target the capabilities of phones and tablets, but that they can also write apps that take advantage of desktop computing power and UI metaphors. A knowledgeable developer would expect that a very rich Flash app designed for the desktop might not scale down to a phone or tablet. That does not mean that the technology is somehow inappropriate for phones and tablets. What Flash does is make software development for the whole range of devices more accessible to more people and less expensive for a good 90% of projects than lower level patform-specific tools.

Truly the most disappointing revelation about the Mac community to me over the past few years is that when Apple is successful, there is a tendency for the group to believe crap because Apple tells it to. There is no better example of that than with Flash.

MyRightEye

Oh man, literally laughed out loud.

Appanage

Truly the most disappointing revelation about the Mac community to me over the past few years is that when Apple is successful, there is a tendency for the group to believe crap because Apple tells it to. There is no better example of that than with Flash.

Yah, you’re right.  Flash really does work fantastic on any mobile device.  We’re all wrong.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Yah, you?re right.? Flash really does work fantastic on any mobile device.? We?re all wrong.

Great! We have a volunteer to tell us what his experience with Flash on a mobile device has been. Please name the device, OS, application or web site, etc. I appreciate your substantive contribution to this discussion!

BTW, on Android Marketplace, Flash gets 4.5 stars on over 260K ratings. Must really suck. Typical comment is that it’s nice for playing games like on Kongregate or access a web site that uses Flash. So yes, it appears that those of you who just take your marching orders from Dilger and Gruber are misinformed.

Appanage

Great! We have a volunteer to tell us what his experience with Flash on a mobile device has been. Please name the device, OS, application or web site, etc. I appreciate your substantive contribution to this discussion!

I’m one of those Apple guys you’re coming after, so I think you have a pretty good idea on which two or three devices I’ve tested a version of Flash.  It’s not like anyone would be stupid enough to develop for more than a few devices, is it?

And really, did you want to go there?  I didn’t even mention the Flash platform’s history of security weaknesses and propensity to crash far more than it should.

Oh, and Milli Vanilli scored a 4.5 star rating on over a million ratings back in the day.  Does that mean I shouldn’t have trusted my ears and instead bought their album?

Seriously.  You can do better, dude.  And you’re in the wrong place if you’re trying to seek converts.  You like your fragmented, unsecure, buggy platforms and we like our clean, closed, consistent ones.  End of story.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I?m one of those Apple guys you?re coming after, so I think you have a pretty good idea on which two or three devices I?ve tested a version of Flash.? It?s not like anyone would be stupid enough to develop for more than a few devices, is it?

Exactly what I thought. None. Thanks for playing. Sorry for trying to drag your head out of the sand.

RonMacGuy

BTW, on Android Marketplace, Flash gets 4.5 stars on over 260K ratings.

Hilarious Bosco.  The link you provide shows the last three comments as of today, June 3.  Two 1-star ratings and one 3-star rating.  LMAO - you should be careful with your links!!  Obviously Mr. Stooge-Narayen has had thousands of his employees posting 5-star ratings to make everyone thing Flash is great!!  LMFAO.

————————————————————————————
Before I updated I could watch anything flash, now it keeps saying must install ...
   
by Amanda? June 3, 2011 (1 STAR)

Before I updated I could watch anything flash, now it keeps saying must install flash player? Wth *fascinate*
————————————————————————————
Recent updates have caused laggy video playback. Was perfect before
   
by boarder.2k9? June 3, 2011 (1 STAR)
————————————————————————————
This update stops me watching proagrams on BBC iplayer. When i seek or farward ...
   
by harpreet? June 3, 2011

This update stops me watching proagrams on BBC iplayer. When i seek or farward a proagram it closes the browser, please fix the problem (HTC Desire)
————————————————————————————

Appanage

Exactly what I thought. None. Thanks for playing. Sorry for trying to drag your head out of the sand.

Seriously, little man, I’m far too old to have to prove anything to a guy who can’t come to my office and see it.  And far too smart to violate five NDAs and my livelihood as well.

On to your next troll bait.  Move along.

RonMacGuy

And some more from today.  Wow, how are they maintaining a 4.5 rating?


Please fix…. will not open
   
by Sphinx? June 3, 2011
Does not work on my HTC Inspire…???????
   
by Amanda? June 3, 2011
My only complaint is how freakin’ big it is!
   
by Bill? June 3, 2011
Not working
   
by Jim? June 3, 2011
Will not open on my droid
   
by Kathy? June 3, 2011

What is going on today? Flash has been crashing all day on phone and ...
   
by Nic? June 3, 2011

What is going on today? Flash has been crashing all day on phone and computer. Please fix. Thanks!
HTC Evo. Websites require install to updated flash player.10.3 not recognized. ...
   
by Charles? June 3, 2011

HTC Evo. Websites require install to updated flash player.10.3 not recognized. Adobe needs additional update to correct

Really wish it could be saved to my SD card. Takes up soooooooo much ...
   
by puppylove? June 3, 2011

Really wish it could be saved to my SD card. Takes up soooooooo much space!!!!
This update is an F’in joke, minus well be browsing on an iPhone.
   
by BigPoppaPhat? June 3, 2011
I’d really like u to fix whatever it is u screwed up - internet ...
   
by Kerry? June 3, 2011

I’d really like u to fix whatever it is u screwed up - internet was fine, now only some parts work! :( Evo

cb50dc

I feel pity for him the way I feel it for cheerleaders when their football team is behind by three touchdowns with two minutes left in the game. Yeah, the trailing team may catch up ? given their recovery of a couple of embarrassing fumbles and, from the leading team, some abruptly comatose defense. But it ain’t likely.

Those cheerleaders, though, are expected to keep on jumping and smiling and yelling.

RonMacGuy

And here is my favorite one:

————————————————————————————
by tijs14? June 3, 2011

Doesnt work on galaxy s 2.3.4. Weird, previous versions did.. 3 stars, it still is a great product.
————————————————————————————

I think this explains it.  Doesn’t work on their galaxy, yet still 3 stars, because it is a great product.  Are they serious?!?!?  I think people still think they need it so badly, and are willing to deal with crashes and slow performance and incredible size so they can see the “entire internet” - that explains why it is rated so highly.  It sort of works, even with lots of problems, but I can see stuff on web pages, so I give it a great rating!!  Pathetic.

Appanage

Those cheerleaders, though, are expected to keep on jumping and smiling and yelling.

Precisely.  I had flings with cheerleaders, had a fling with Flash, but neither were the marrying kind for obvious reasons: you can’t trust where either’s been, stability is a huge issue, and they’ll inevitably always let you down.

But don’t trust me.  As the little guy said, I’ve never run Flash on anything in my life…. wink

cb50dc

cheerleaders… Flash… neither were the marrying kind for obvious reasons…

Careful, friend, that’s my sister you’re talkin’ ‘bout… wink

(Uh, as a cheerleader, I mean.)

Appanage

My favorite was this one: “I?d really like u to fix whatever it is u screwed up - internet was fine, now only some parts work!”

This is the kind of evaluation being cited for an objective assessment of Flash’s performance on mobile platforms?

Tiger

Of course it’s more than a video platform, but if his premise is that he expects to author once and get to as many platforms as possible, and I would add devices, then Flash has already failed.

For example, and this is just ONE EXAMPLE, the Xoom apparently still hasn’t sold a million units. Apple sold 1 million iPad2s in the first month. FAIL. And it was given the best shot at competing. For all the complaints Apple has gotten in 20 years for ignoring Enterprise, well, Enterprise doesn’t seem to be ignoring Apple now. iPads are everywhere in business, education, medicine, etc. The rest, not so much!

Galaxy is getting poor reviews (see above!) for bugginess and an interface that is, well, insufficient. Not that it won’t improve. But the point is, Flash is rapidly falling behind as the tool for Write Once. Why? Because people are making the choice to buy devices that don’t actually support it!

As for getting back to the video issue, and it’s just one issue, Apple can still provide format translation for Flash videos to the devices.

And yep, I still think he’s a moron for his statements. I’m guessing he’s not reading trade industry publications and such and seeing what is really going on. Not to mention his own blogs with customers complaining. But then again, customers, myself included, have been complaining about Adobe for years. How their board has allowed them to operate at such a distance from their customers is baffling.

Appanage

Careful, friend, that?s my sister you?re talkin? ?bout?

I promise I always told her she was beautiful.  And she still thinks “it was me - it wasn’t her”.  wink

Lee Dronick

Of course it?s more than a video platform

That is my biggest beef with Flash. If it was just video I would be okay with it.

Anyway, the iPad’s days are numbered like the number of decimal places of Pi

sflocal

I just laugh how Bosco (being a flash developer) defends Flash and is now conveniently quiet after seeing the complaints about Flash from the Android community.

Denial in its most obvious form.

RonMacGuy

Denial in its most obvious form.

Now, now, Bosco may just be busy. I’m sure he will be back to argue his point.

I did a quick study of the past 10 screens of comments on Flash for Android. 97 comments (they can’t seem to get 10 responses consistently per page). There were 33 1-Star, 8 2-Star, 11 3-Star, 10 4-Star, and 35 5-Star (97 most recent comments). Basically a solid 3-Star rating. Hardly anything worthwhile in my opinion. What cracks me up are some of the comments on the 5-Stars. “Use to work on HTC evo now it doesn’t root user please fix” - This got a 5-Star rating? Huh? “Works..what more do u want..” Well, stability maybe? “Lol apple” Hmmm, seems like an Apple hater - wonder how “objective” this is… “Android can iPhone can t.smile” - Wow, I wonder if this is Narayen undercover. “Acceptable” - 5-Star? Standards must be pretty low. One person said 4 MB and another said 11 MB - Must be due to fragmentation issues… “Im sure its a great app, but not quite sure what it does exactly…any help? HTC Evo Shift 4G” - LOL, wow this person definitely doesn’t deserve a 4G anything!!

archimedes

Truly the most disappointing revelation about the Mac community to me over the past few years is that when Apple is successful, there is a tendency for the group to believe crap because Apple tells it to. There is no better example of that than with Flash.

For me, it has nothing to do with Apple or a credulous Mac community (or the Windows or Android or Linux communities, for that matter) - Flash itself is a mediocre plug-in which I’ve never been fond of on *any* platform; yet what I dislike the most is how it’s commonly used: delivering intrusive advertising, choppy video, “gateway” pages that distract from content, security exploits, etc..

I regret that once the villains who created this lousy Flash content switch to JavaScript and HTML 5, it won’t be nearly as easy to turn this garbage off. Already we’re stuck with JavaScript pop-ups, annoying animations, and useless floating chrome bars which reduce the amount of content you can see on a page.

Macromedia created Flash; Adobe made it bigger, slower and more resource-intensive; but the people who have used Flash to ruin perfectly good web sites are the real culprits.

ilikeimac

Apple could use the iCloud to deliver server side decoding or translation of Flash

They could, but they won’t. They’re trying to push web developers to move to HTML5 and away from Flash; adding support for Flash, on the server or client side, contradicts that message. It would be like asking a friend to buy goods from someone you’re boycotting and then sell them to you.

RonMacGuy

Truly the most disappointing revelation about the Mac community to me over the past few years is that when Apple is successful, there is a tendency for the group to believe crap because Apple tells it to. There is no better example of that than with Flash.

In all seriousness Bosco, statements like these lose you all credibility. FACT: 1 in 3 of the last 100 flash users on android devices gave it a 1-Star rating. Not the Apple community here. These are android users. 1 in 3 rank it the lowest they can. That is terrible and demonstrates the truth about flash. Victor - “Videos no longer work G2.” Ken - “Hey devs! Stop ignoring your users! This app uses FAR too much phone memory!” Nghia - “No more working on my regular websites.” skasj - “No work no more.” (Not great grammar, but you get the picture) Nic - “What is going on? Flash has been crashing all day on phone.” I mean, every 15 minutes another 1 rating is posted. Amanda has a fascinate. 1-Star. harpreet has an HTC Desire. 1-Star. Charles has an Evo. 1-Star. Different Amanda has an HTC Inspire. 1-Star. Kathy has a Droid. 1-Star. Dennis has a Droid X. 1-Star. Thomas says “Doesn’t play video on rooted HTC EVO Shift with latest Cyanogenmod 7 ROM.” These are not Apple fans or iPhone users - these are average android phone users across a ton of different android models that can’t get flash to work for them. So stop your stupid generalizing about “The Apple Community” here and face facts. Really getting old.

I really wish android market would publish their rankings like Amazon does where they show how many of each star make up the 260,184 reviews. I would guess 100,000 gave it 1-Star. And, it’s not Apple brainwashing people into thinking Flash is bad on android devices - Just search the web for “flash problems on android” and read the thousands of articles talking about the issues.

RonMacGuy

They?re trying to push web developers to move to HTML5 and away from Flash

Not just Apple - See Bryan’s current article here on Google “Citing the need to implement new features based on HTML 5”...

Google

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Facing facts… Sorry, I’ve been doing other things this evening. But there is one fact which emerged today that I was sure fact-checker RonMacFactCheckerGuy would bring to our attention. According to comScore numbers, Android marketshare (US smartphone total subscribers) grew at 4x the rate that iPhone market share grew in the period from January 2011 to April 2011. That’s not new sales, that’s installed base. The Flaccid Verizon uNicorn is making a huge difference.

Some of you are hilarious in your hatred. What threat is there to you in having Flash player available on the iPhone? You don’t have to install it. Android users don’t have to install it, but millions have. Why is the world better with your preferences forced upon millions of people who bought iPhones but don’t want to be part of your hateful cult? All you’re doing is making your niche smaller and smaller in phones and creating more content providers who don’t want to cater to you in tablets.

Appanage

Android marketshare (US smartphone total subscribers) grew at 4x the rate that iPhone market share grew in the period from January 2011 to April 2011. That?s not new sales, that?s installed base. The Flaccid Verizon uNicorn is making a huge difference.

So rather than confront the facts presented in response to your ineffectual rant you’ve decided to change the subject?  That’s truly weak sauce.  And that you call it “hatred” rather than simply admit your premise was completely destroyed.  Truly abysmal debating skills.  Let’s go the the judges: ah yes, zero points for you in this round.  So sorry.

As for the subject you’ve decided to move all of us to, market share,  I’m not sure if you’ve figured out how businesses work yet, and I’m hopeful you will if you go to college and take an economics course or two (as I can recall the 101 course was more than sufficient) based on your Microsoftopian view of sales but here’s the kicker in case you were away for all this:

1. As of the beginning of the year Apple holds 4% of phone marketshare and over 50% of all profits.  If you want to move units, go be HP.  We all know how well that’s going.  You do understand that the number one priority in business is to take home the lion’s share of the profits, right?

2. Apple sells phones.  Google sells customer data to advertisers and, as proxies, companies who sell phones.  It’s that simple.  If you need any help figuring that out I’d refer you to the magazine publisher deals and the end findings of the GPS data debacle - and that’s just the past few weeks.

3. Despite there being this huge number of Android devices out there, iOS users still dramatically outpurchase Android users.  We developers like that, because it allows us to avoid living under bridges.  Just a few weeks ago, MLB.com CEO Bob Bowman stated that app sales on Apple?s iOS are 5 times greater than on Android, and some have seen 10-20x greater sales on iOS.  And if that weren’t a motivator, the platform is far easier to develop for than its counterparts.

Now I know your entire development skills base is likely tied up in Flash and you’re still altruistic enough to believe that Android really is open, is the savior of the mobile future, Google’s a good hearted company, blah blah blah but reality is you’re putting at least some of your eggs in the wrong basket and it’s probably time to move on, stop calling people haters because you can’t address their facts any other way, and accept the real world in front of you.  Superior platform, great tools, no fragmentation, no interests (read: carriers) blocking your path to software/firmware updates because they want to sell another phone in six months, no mining your data to sell crap to you every three minutes, no Chinese government hacking your account, no lies about being “not evil”, no delusions from your chosen platform’s CEO about how great his product runs on your device after 3-4 years of failing to get it right - do I really need to go on?

This is not about haters versus lovers, open versus closed, good versus evil, cool versus uncool, fanboy versus all-around-good-guy, or any other superficial crap you’ve either insinuated or bought into: this is about reality.  Reality is Flash is a broken platform, and since you added the bizarre Android-lover argument by extension, Apple owns over 50% of the entire phone industry’s profits and 99% of the tablet industry’s profits.  And while we’re at it, just like almost everything else they’ve made in recent history, “it just works”.  I wish their stuff didn’t work as well in relation to their competitors, I wish there were other competitive mobile development platforms, I wish all industries had viable competitors… and I wish I were Mandingo but I’m not.

Please don’t get so distracted, and please try to respond to the facts everyone here has provided you rather than call them haters because you have nothing to say.  You’re wasting the time of a lot of very intelligent people.

RonMacGuy

You disappoint me, Bosco. Can’t support your claim on-topic so you go off-topic. Well, I could bring up tons of off-topic facts about Apple’s performance, profits, etc., but why bother? I guess sflocal was right - “Denial in its most obvious form.”

Funny thing is, this all goes back to fragmentation in my opinion. I suspect when android flash ran on 2 or 3 devices early on with a single version of android, most of the early adopters gave it 5-Star ratings because it probably worked fairly well. But now they are trying to get the thing to work across a dozen versions of android and hundreds of devices and failing miserably. 1 in 3 says flash sucks on android. 1 in 3 android users, not the Apple Community. How do you explain this, Bosco? Please help me to understand!! I understand that android is growing since it is on hundreds of devices vs. the 1 little iPhone that sells 1 out of every 4 smartphones. But explain the 1 in 3 for me.

Latest android flash 1-Star ratings this morning. “Not working..” by k. “freezes up everything on my htc desire please fix this” by kid. “Slow, jerky, huge, wastes internal memory. Well-hidden privacy controls. Typical Adobe crapware.” by freer. Ha, good one. “Doesn’t work- Samsung Fascinate. I am sad! I can’t watch my favorite videos. Always read reviews!” by Jaime. Funny, I thought you said flash did so much more than just videos - but videos seems to be what most people whine about. “Do not install this update. It kept closing my browser unexpectedly. When I removed the update it went back to normal. HTC Desire” by Ken N. Yep, this is all us in the Apple Community believing crap that Apple is telling us. Yep, that’s it.

RonMacGuy

You?re wasting the time of a lot of very intelligent people.

Well said, Appanage. I rather enjoyed your post. Thank you.

RonMacGuy

The Flaccid Verizon uNicorn is making a huge difference.

Actually, it is, but slowly as people are freed from their 2 year agreements and can buy a new phone. Funny how we look at things differently. In the face of probably a couple dozen new android smartphones released during the time, Apple grew 1.3 points with a one-year-old-designed iPhone. Apple improved its market share position without the latest-and-greatest design. Wow, that says something. So now you are hanging your hat on android growing 4x faster than iOS in the US from Jan-Apr 2011 when back in Nov/Dec 2010 you said by end of 2011 iPhone would deteriorate to the 10% market share level just like their computers? What changed, Bosco? Maybe they will start to deteriorate in market share starting in July. Oh, and Apple is growing like crazy in China and India, and still probably can’t make enough iPhones to supply demand for them. Apple’s strategy is global growth. They are doing this so well with iPhone 4, there is no rush for an iPhone 5 until demand starts to taper off for the 4, which isn’t happening yet. I guess I am an Apple “glass half full” kind of guy.

And android still can’t even get their latest version on more than 5% of android phones out there - 6 months later. Funny.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Now I know your entire development skills base is likely tied up in Flash

Well, speaking of making crap up. You just did. Great work. I can sum up your post in a short sentence: Apple is my Daddy and my Mommy, errrrrrr….... Apple protects me from the bad, bad world.

Back in the day when many of us chose Macs as our favorite desktop platform, “protection” wasn’t the issue. We liked the platform better. We still got to make decisions about the software we wanted, developers we wanted to interact with, etc. all outside of Apple’s purview. When I bought two iPhones (almost 2 years ago now), the trend was Apple being more lenient with the App Store, even if it remained the sole source of software for the iPhone. New customers at the time, who would invest in phones plus two-year contracts, did not anticipate that Steve Jobs would go Puritan on content and would ban third party developer tools just 8 months later. Adobe CEO is right. That was all about protecting a business model and not one iota about customer experience.

So if I didn’t like Apple and it’s crippled iPhone, why not just walk? I did. I bought a Nexus One at full price and am enjoying it on AT&T until that contract is up. It is a better phone. I had a chance to drive an iPhone 4 last summer for a week. I missed a working notification system and having my texts read to me as they came in (via a very inexpensive Android app that’s “allowed” to run in the background).

Having used both iPhone and Android phone extensively, I can tell when you guys are being like Protestant parents warning their sons about Catholic girls, which is, as the saying goes, pretty much every time you flap your gums about Android. RonAndroidMarketReviewGuy, for example, lists several comments relating to “internal memory” in his catalog of recent comments. I’d bet that he can’t give me a three sentence summary of *why” these people think it’s an issue, why nothing can be done about the issue, and why it would be an unsolvable issue on iOS. And now he’ll say in RonWhateverGuy fashion that it’s not his job to make sense of these complaints, but they just show that everyone hates Flash. Dude is a busy Ron[——]Guy, and has a $60M engineering budget to manage. I get that.

At any rate, no, I’m not a Flash developer. I use a variety of high and low level tools for my development work. At the low level, I’ve hand-optimized AltiVec code (G4/G5) to make image processing algorithms run very fast. At the high level, I prefer REAL Studio for cross-platform and web application development. I solve problems for my customers. For more than a decade, I’ve been able to offer them software that keeps them out of the clutches of platform vendors. I pretty much see the “protection” Apple is offering you as little more than protection from buying stuff from other vendors. All but the most religious will come to a, “yeah whatever” conclusion about that approach eventually. The way the smartphone market has unfolded in the past 18 months shows how quickly it can happen.

Appanage

Remember, Bosco, the discussion you engaged was Flash and Apple.  Not Android versus Apple.  But since you continue going there….

I solve problems for my customers. For more than a decade, I?ve been able to offer them software that keeps them out of the clutches of platform vendors.

Funny, we’ve been doing precisely the same thing.  However, my customers have asked to never again have to deal with the problems of their past.  And 90% of those problems centered on inter-vendor platform issues.  Third party peripherals, graphics drivers, DLL hell, watching as vendors point the finger at the OS platform, the hardware guy, whichever direction was not their own. 

This is the legacy of mainstream computing, both for businesses and everyday people, and now you get to enjoy the market dynamics of a platform so loose that even its own creator has slowly started tighening the reins to make it more look the platform Apple’s had in place from day one.  Do you honestly believe it’s in your customers’ best interests to sell them on a platform where (1.) carriers have zero desire or pressure to provide customers updates, (2.) if they did manufacturers have to decide to care rather than just sell the customer another device (this is how they make money, after all), (3.) the lack of app curation and control has resulted in loads of virus-filled apps, (4.) developers have little desire to build apps for it because they can’t monetize the way they can on iOS?

Or are you one of those guys that supports a platform because the inherent anarchy allows you a full time fix-it job?  I mean, there’s nothing wrong with that but don’t sit here talking in altruistic tones when the platform you appear to have chosen offers your customers the exact opposite of that which they seek: solutions without continual handholding.

Paul Goodwin

Back to the article for a sec He’s saying this stuff out of desperation for his job. Since he arrived the stock has gone from about $40 to about $33 since late 2007. Nothing else has worked, why not say something to people about Apple. It probably would have helped his cause if he’d said that they’ve learned something from Apple. He won’t be there much longer I’m guessing.

Hazelrigg

Does anyone other then Adobe give a rats ass about flash?

Jamie

Anyone other than Adobe?

Just Adobe and Brad. I assure you that the ‘clueless’ end-users who have been mentioned here and there throughout this thread can’t even tell the difference between something running utilizing Flash or something utilizing HTML5, and don’t care so long as it works (which clearly Flash isn’t, by and large).

It reminds of me of the good old Wintel vs. Mac days when Windows machines were proclaimed superior by the geeks that pretty much used their computers exclusively for porn and video games. Whatever. wink

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Does anyone other then Adobe give a rats ass about flash?

I’m glad you asked!

* 3+ million Flash developers.

* GameStop, which bought Kongregate a year ago.

* YouTube, which has listed reasons it still prefers Flash to HTML5.

* Any web publisher who wants to offer a standardized, rich presentation of audio or video, or who wants to monetize audio or video on the web.

* BlackBerry PlayBook users, for whom Flash opens both the whole web experience and thousands of applications that already run great, not to mention custom rich-internet applications that form the back offices of companies large and small.

* Interactive media container for cross-platform digital magazines.

* It is an open and royalty-free format. You pay for premium tools to create in the format, but free tools—EVEN FROM ADOBE—are available.

You may not like Flash because it’s used for ads, or because Steve Jobs called Adobe lazy, or whatever. But that doesn’t make it irrelevant or limit its days. It is far and away the best tool on the market for a lot of applications. And it would be on iPad/iPhone in a minute if Apple didn’t fear that its availability would distract customers from having their money sucked out of them by Apple.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

(3.) the lack of app curation and control has resulted in loads of virus-filled apps,

You’re talking about the Mac, right? An old acquaintance of mine, Brian Hall, who is the guy behind The Missing Sync has a maxim he shares about app stores: “For the record, I am against sole-source AND curated app stores. Pick one, or the other, but don’t have it both ways.”

The problem is that when you have both, you have a perverse incentive for the app store proprietor to just make crap up to lock in customers, which does not serve customers or suppliers well at all. The ban on third party tools (aimed at Adobe’s iOS packager) basically cost Adobe and Conde Nast several million dollars in short term development costs to put out a product for iPad based on untested and hurried technology that would meet the letter of Apple’s guidelines. The fanboy who told you that was good for you and your “iPad experience” and security and all the horrible things that Apple is protecting you from is a class-A moron.

And no, Appenage, I am not that guy who creates problems to lock in work. I hope that the irony of suggesting that in a discussion about Adobe’s technologies being locked out of the iOS platform is not lost on you. I am the guy who could tell a school district purchasing manager that one year was under direction to phase out Macs that the software would work just fine and their data would work just fine on Windows, then the next year, when they were directed to buy more Macs, that the software and data would still work fine transitioning the other way. I even told him that there were no additional license costs. It’s funny that when I stopped being a shill for my favorite desktop platform, people trusted me more because I didn’t have to sell them on something they didn’t want in order to sell something I wanted to offer.

I recognize there is a lot of appeal in having one company being the face of everything. But that one interface piles costs and hurdles between solutions providers and end-customers, while always taking a cut. More distributed responsibility will meet actual customer needs better at lower prices eventually. Even if you are under the mistaken impression that the iPhone is a better phone than pick your Android, the openness of the Android ecosystem seems to have tremendous value to all stakeholders in the mobile market realized in a very short time. Even something that you think completely sucks has value to millions of people. I think it’s good that they can decide for themselves. You seem to have a problem with that.

Appanage

But that one interface piles costs and hurdles between solutions providers and end-customers, while always taking a cut.

This sentence literally makes zero since and has no basis in any economic reality whatsoever.  There are no “hurdles”, no distributors, resellers, you-name-it between the Apple ecosystem and its customers.  This is precisely why Apple has stayed away from multielevel enterprise designs.  A typical enterprise design has between 10 and 15 developers, integrators, manufacturers, distributors, resellers, and SPs.  A typical Apple design has 2-4, including no third parties sucking the teet of middleman money and a fraction of the integration costs since we’re not required to cobble together multiparty offerings on fragmented platforms.

I don’t expect you to understand or feel the pain of the client/server era since you weren’t in the business past ten years ago according to your recent post.  But that means you completely lack the context needed to understand why your argument is hopelessly flawed.  It might have an inkling of merit if we were able to compare an OSX-iOS Apple with an MCA-LS-OS/2 IBM but the Apple model is only closed within the white box and not beyond.  And yes, even Flash can be run on iOS with a few simple steps.

More distributed responsibility will meet actual customer needs better at lower prices eventually.

Eventually?  What the hell does that mean?  Eventually the world will come to an end, but I’m not basing my life’s ambitions’s on my exit despite that fact.

This comment, once again, literally has no supporting facts and even if it did I for one have no intention of selling a customer on the proposition that I can save them money “eventually”.  They could be two or three generations of computing platforms into the future before “eventually” arrives, and I’m certain you own no better crystal ball than the chicken bones I employ when forced to make ridiculous assumptions such as these. 

Seriously?  I’m still shaking my head at this sentence.

...the openness of the Android ecosystem seems to have tremendous value to all stakeholders in the mobile market realized in a very short time.

Gobbledyspeak. Again, please provide factual basis for “tremendous value”.  If by “tremendous value” you mean that pimpleheaded kids who will eventually be our overlords are learning how to root their phone then I buy it completely and I support that effort.  That’s how I cut my teeth and it’s how we keep the blood of the industry moving along.  It’s no different than jailbreak: go for it.

However, the rest of us need to turn something on, have it work, have the apps and capabilities we require, and get to that point as quickly as possible and with as few people in the middle.  On mobile, the app ecosystem alone clearly shows iOS is the platform for this.  Corporate adoption backs this.  Where Android will excel is high touch, high budget environments like the military where there’s money and a need to literally strip a device to its core and build a platform stack from there.  Sadly, 95% of all organizations have no desire or need to spend this amount of time when they can deploy a fully apped iOS device in seconds and wipe it even faster.  I’d go into Mac here but not enough time.  Some other day.

 

You seem to have a problem with that.

Once again, you’ve completely missed the point.  My customers expect me to deliver maximum business value while completely understanding their needs, and they don’t want to have to call me or anyone else ever again once the solution is deployed.  I can’t in good conscience sell them an effort that requires a massive operations budget and an sizable development budget in place of a solution I can simply hand to them and have it work until it dies.  It’s that simple. 

Like someone said re Flash earlier, customers don’t know what’s not working.  They just know it isn’t working.  When I walk away things need to work and they need to work without any handholding.  That’s what the platform you dread delivers customers, and any halfway accurate or well-though ROI proves it out.

But again, you don’t seem to address anything any of us say, so I’m not sure it’s useful for any of us to continue this.  We now know what you don’t know, we also know you don’t respond well to factual information (not at all), and we know you’ve got a few more years of pain and context before you understand how wrong your assertion of “open” is.  Bumps and bruises ahead - I wish you the best of luck getting through it by taking the hard road.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Perhaps you’d like to discuss why many periodical publishers were and have been skeptical about packaging their periodicals for iPad. That discussion actually had a lot to do with Flash, and still has a great deal to do with Flash and other Adobe publishing technologies. That’s the basis of Adobe CEO’s assertion that iPad is headed to a niche, just like phones.

Apple has asked content and application suppliers to package their offerings for iPad into apps that can only be sold through the App Store. About a year ago, they laid down a rule disallowing third party tools and libraries, a rule which was partially rescinded after EU regulators intervened. Prior to this rule, Adobe had shipped iOS Packager, which allowed publishers to take their Flash source that they used to deploy apps and content to a variety of devices and contexts, and spit out an iOS app which could be submitted to Apple’s App Store. Using Flash meant that these content providers could rely more on designers and content experts and less on trained programmers. It also meant that they could use a single source base and deploy to multiple devices and contexts, rather than having to rewrite for each platform. When Apple banned third party tools, publishers such as Conde Nast had to scramble, because the path they thought they had to the iPad was disallowed by all-knowing Apple. Adobe and these publishers invested millions of dollars in a quick, stop-gap solution involving InDesign which met the requirements, but added complications to their publishing processes and sucked in comparison to the cleaner Flash based solutions they already had.

This narrative is well documented. It added significant costs to content providers and their tools vendors trying to get content onto the iPad. It made their apps suck more. It brought regulatory attention. Even with Apple getting slapped down 4 months later, it was still several months before Adobe, the big tools vendor, was able to update iOS Packager, and there is still concern among smaller tools vendors that effort to target iOS devices could be wasted if Steve Jobs has another silly panic attack.

The “one curated store” model has also brought a difficult patent problem. On one hand, Apple proclaimed that all in-app purchases had to be made through its mechanism. It has given publishers until the end of June to either adopt that mechanism for subscriptions or get out. It’s denied Sony’s ebook reader application entry into its store. It has not provided a workable mechanism for any developer that has more than a few dozen items to offer in-app. Who knows whether it will boot the Kindle and Nook apps, or whether Apple will successfully hold Amazon and B&N hostage for some royalty. And if that wasn’t enough, they have a patent problem with the whole in-app system. Whether troll or not, Lodsys presents an even bigger headache to larger publishers or developers who adopt Apple’s in-app purchase scheme that to the little developers who might get hit with scattershot federal lawsuits. Expect other patent trolls to learn from how Lodsys proceeds and go after one homogeneous target. By contrast, in Android developer circles, they’re already talking about how to implement in-app purchases in a way that would steer clear of Lodsys should the patent troll meet any litigation success or spread its terrorism wider. There is no option for iOS developers to do that because there is only one true way of doing in-app purchases now, and that’s the Apple way.

So that’s what I’m talking about when I say that Apple, in controlling everything, adds costs. It’s obvious that they end up getting a cut of everything. Not that there’s anything inherently wrong with getting a cut, even if they’re just adding costs and not corresponding value. But it does mean that when competing systems emerge that don’t take a royalty, don’t impose added costs, and are generally less expensive to access, people are going to ask if there really is important value that justifies the added costs. In smartphones, over the last 18 months, carriers, consumers, developers, handset manufacturers, and everyone in between has asked that question, with consumers now concluding by more than a 3:2 ratio that, no, Apple control is not worth the purported benefits—up from over 50:1 in Apple’s favor before November, 2009.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

(continued from previous post…)

Why don’t you think that the same won’t happen with whatever market “tablets” turn out to be? Why don’t you think that mere access to tons and tons of inexpensive and inexpensively created Flash content will be a factor that even the typical (you think ignorant) purchaser or user will consider when choosing a tablet? Why do you think that publishers will choose to be Apple’s bitch rather than supplying their best stuff to platforms that work with their content easier and less expensively? Are you following the unexpected popularity of the Nook Color with women and publishers who want to reach them?

Terrin

Have you actually used a Nook? It is nice for reading books, which of course is what Barnes and Nobles markets the device to do. As a general purpose tablet, however, it stinks. For good reason, the device would cost quite a bit more to make it useful for any other purpose.

My co-worker has one. She is always asking me to figure out how to use it for her. Friday, she wanted to go on the internet and it wasn’t syncing with wi-fi properly. Something as simple as using the Internet on a Nook is a horrendous experience. The application opens so slow as does going to any website. So she uses it strictly for books. She is jealous of my iPad, for good reason.

Are you following the unexpected popularity of the Nook Color with women and publishers who want to reach them?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Does your cow-orker have a regular Nook or the Nook Color? My recent experience with a stock Nook Color and the latest software update was pretty similar to that of a variety of 7” inch previous generation Android tablets. It’s quite good for email and web on the go, reading of course. Fits in a purse, which is great for girls.

My experience putting CyanogenMod on one was painless, and the result was even better. It feels like using a bigger version of my Nexus One. Pretty snappy. 1024x600 IPS display, capacitive multi-touch.

Here’s a video of a mouth breather demonstrating Nook Color running CyanogenMod 7. He shows Angry Birds at 6:00 if you want something familiar to compare with. Very snappy browser at 7:40. Google Earth (3D and pinch-to-zoom) at 8:00. Widgets at 11:00.

B&N isn’t bothered in the slightest that modders and advanced users want to buy this and toss a mod on it. They’re recent foray into their own app store and a slightly more standard Android build—including Flash player—indicates that they want to provide a nice experience for those customers who want the B&N experience. They recognize that when a customer buys the device, the customer owns the device. Funny how refreshing that attitude seems.

Tiger

How amusing it is to add to this thread the CEO of Motorola complaining about the Android platform and it’s messy, uncontrolled approach to their tablet apps.

In fact, it’s downright satisfying to add this.
Enjoy!!!!!

Jay Emm

Adobe’s CEO seems downright delusional, if you ask me. He basing the iPad’s demise solely because it doesn’t run 12 year old technology (Flash) on a device designed for long battery life and stability? Get over yourself, Narayen. I predict Flash’s demise because it doesn’t run on the iPad. Flash was great 10 years ago when everyone was dialing up to the internet, but the next standard is fast becoming HTML 5; precisely what Apple predicted. Flash is a buggy battery hog - perfect for Android devices.

Paul Goodwin

Good one Jay. Haha

Lee Dronick

I predict Flash?s demise because it doesn?t run on the iPad.

It doesn’t run an iPhone either and a lot of them have been sold. From what I read it doesn’t really run on most portable devices. The technical hurdles to make Flash run well on non Apple smart phones and tablets are probably not insurmountable, but might take more money than it is worth.  I am just speculating of course, maybe Flash is a big source of revenue for Adobe and they want to keep it coming.

I will tell Mr. Narayen one thing. I am seeing less and less Flash on the websites I visit. Even adverts are being served in a different format.

RonMacGuy

RonAndroidMarketReviewGuy, for example, lists several comments relating to ?internal memory? in his catalog of recent comments. I?d bet that he can?t give me a three sentence summary of *why? these people think it?s an issue, why nothing can be done about the issue, and why it would be an unsolvable issue on iOS. And now he?ll say in RonWhateverGuy fashion that it?s not his job to make sense of these complaints, but they just show that everyone hates Flash.

What you say is true, Bosco. It is not my job to make sense of the complaints. They may all be morons that can’t solve what might be a very simple issue. Well, they bought android devices, so they most likely are morons. In any event, as usual you completely miss the point. If android worked well, it should handle these flash issues for the end user. Long-term people will grow tired of dealing with this garbage constantly.

I love your attempts to change the topic. Really makes me laugh. Nook Color - really? BTW, I don’t hate flash. Nor do I think everyone hates flash. I do occasionally enable it in Safari on my Mac, and it keeps my daughters entertained on Webkinz and other sites. In the past year, I have actually missed having Flash on 3 occasions on my iPad - once researching a car, once researching a trip, and a third time I think on a restaurant webpage. That’s it. Would I have like to have it running on my iPad? Sure. If it worked and didn’t crash my iPad or use excessive processing or battery power. I really don’t hate it, and I wish adobe could fix it so it runs well on mobile devices. But they can’t and it doesn’t so if I need it I go to my Mac or my PC.

Fact: flash sucks on a lot of android mobile devices. The recent ratings don’t lie. Be it fragmentation or just the fact that adobe can’t keep up with all the devices, there are many cases where flash sucks. Period. Maybe you, Genius Bosco, can fix it on your device, but there are thousands who can’t on their devices. Today’s 1-Star ratings: Summer says “Doesn’t work, websites still say to download flash and cannot open manually. Please fix! Also SD card option would be better.” Charley says “Doesn’t work on embedded videos - always asks to update flash. This has been happening for months on HTC desire. Please fix.” Jimmy says “Doesn’t work with embedded videos.” Some strange user name says “Actually I would rather give it a -5 stars. Flash is a nightmare on touch screen devices. It can not even allow you to navigate by swiping the screen.” Daniel says “Wont update past 10.3 cant uninstall to reinstall wither.” Elle says “I’m having the same problems as Kristen; same phone-Sam. Fascinate-I can’t open it.” It never ends.

These are just average android users - I feel so sorry for them. They just want it to work. So sad it doesn’t for them. But there is hope - here is a chart showing the continuing decline of embedded flash on websites!! We will have to monitor this until the nightmare finally goes away!! flash sucks. Over 14% reduction over past year. Not bad!!

You are a broken record, Bosco. Thanks as always for the laugh!!

Oh, I just saw this 5-Star rating on flash for android: “YES i can watch p0rn!” by sae. LMAO - That just about sums it up.  Good for him (or maybe her?). If only android geeks had girlfriends, they wouldn’t need porn!! Do you have a girlfriend, Bosco?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Ron, why mock the Nook Color? It runs Flash out of the box now, something your underpowered iPad will never be able to do. I assume you’ve used one with either B&N’s latest software or the very popular CyanogenMod. If you get one, you don’t even have to make that tough decision. CM can install a simple graphic boot loader, and you can stick it on an SD card.

Other than semi-pro ball washing, a popular sport in these times, I don’t see why any thinking Apple customer would disagree with Brian Hall’s quote, which I posted above and will paste here again: ?For the record, I am against sole-source AND curated app stores. Pick one, or the other, but don?t have it both ways.”

You own your iPad. You should be able to choose the software you wish to install on it, even if it shortens battery life or crashes. Plenty of apps in the App Store do both of those, and badly. Flash isn’t anywhere near as bad on Android devices.

RonMacGuy

I wasn’t mocking the Nook Color, I was humored by the fact that you made the leap to talking about the Nook Color to avoid the issues you don’t want to face.  If people want a Nook Color with flash, then more power to them.  Your attempt to lessen my iPad is childish.  I love my iPad.  Tens of millions of people love their iPads.  I don’t need flash on it.  I accept it, why can’t you?  The benefits of my iPad over a Nook Color FAR outweigh the lack of flash, which is very minor to me.

Your flash pedestal that you stand on to criticize Apple is very weak.  Flash is pathetic on a lot of android devices.  Just ask the thousands that are trying to get it to work on their devices.  My daughters are disappointed that they can’t run Webkinz on my iPad, but other than that I really don’t care!!

So on the Nook Color, how many months did it take to get it able to run flash?  6 months?  Pathetic.  Can it even access the android market yet?  7” screen?  Too small.  Can you get a 3G version?  Does it finally have email support?  Didn’t even have email for the first 6 months?  This is Bosco’s iPad killer?  As always, thanks for the laugh!!

Whoops, I guess NOW I’m mocking the Nook Color!!

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Ron, if you loved your daughters as much as your iPad, you’d spring for a refurbed Nook Color so they could run Webkinz. It’s $225.

RonMacGuy

you?d spring for a refurbed Nook Color so they could run Webkinz

Bosco, I love my daughters more than you can imagine. I actually love them more than you hate Apple. I love them more than your disappointment that you didn’t buy any Apple stock when it was double-digit. I love them more than the guy who posted the following hates android flash: ?Actually I would rather give it a -5 stars. Flash is a nightmare on touch screen devices. It can not even allow you to navigate by swiping the screen.? You can’t even navigate by swiping the screen?!?!? -5 stars?!?!?  My goodness, that is bad.

As for running Webkinz on a Nook Color, you obviously have never seen the Webkinz world. You would love it - flash galore. But, it is a very busy screen, even on a 24” iMac. It would be a struggle on a 10” iPad, and nearly impossible to do anything on a 7” screen. They get plenty of playtime on my iMac and my old XP system, and don’t really need to play while mobile. But thanks for your concern!! You really seem to care, especially about my engineering budget size, which at $60M is significantly down from where it used to be!!

grin

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