Adobe Offers Backdoor Flash Apps for iPhone Through Conversion

| Product News

Adobe announced on Monday that Adobe Flash Professional CS5 will allow Flash developers to export their Flash apps as iPhone apps, apps that can then be submitted to Apple's App Store. The company said it planned to release a public beta of Flash Professional CS5 with this feature "later this year."

While a far cry from a Flash plugin for Apple's Safari for iPhone, the announcement marks a step forward for Adobe's Flash platform which is currently on the fast track to nowhere on the hottest mobile phone platform on the planet. When Adobe is able to bring it to market, the conversion tools in Flash Professional CS5 will allow the myriad of Flash browser apps, including the thousands of games that have been developed for Flash, to at least make their way to the App Store submission list.

Currently, iPhone app developers have to develop with Objective C, one of the native coding languages for Mac OS X, and the only official language for iPhone OS. Objective C is not widely used outside the Apple ecosystem, and learning a new language is a barrier for outside developers to cross over into the iPhone world.

While thousands of developers have done so, Adobe's move with Flash Pro CS5 will remove that barrier to those already comfy in the Flash world, which should mean the march to 200,000 iPhone apps will get a shot in the arm.

Earlier on Monday, Adobe also announced Flash 10.1, a release of the platform that was intended to bring mobile platforms in sync with desktop and latptop computers. Flash 10.1 will be integral to the iPhone app conversion, though it will still not allow Flash to run on the iPhone.

The company will be releasing Flash 10.1 in beta later this year for all of the major mobile phone OSes except for iPhone, where neither Apple nor Adobe have been able to successfully implement it.

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8 Comments Leave Your Own

Bryan Chaffin

Yep, nothing could possibly go wrong with this - Flash apps developed in Flash and then output as an iPhone app…Yep, this should be complete trouble-free.

geoduck

Of course it will work just fine. They are starting with apps written in Flash, and we all know that there are never problems with Flash Apps…

Dave Hamilton

Actually, I have no problem with this, and neither should Apple in my humble opinion. wink

Reason being: these apps will be running “Flash” within their protected space. This is as opposed to being run inside a web browser where it could potentially get at other apps, other web pages, passwords, possibly system files, etc., depending on how Mobile Safari would handle it. But inside their own sandbox, these apps can harm no one but themselves (for the most part, that is), and should be just as safe as any other app. We’ve seen plenty of apps that chew battery, and if these “Flash” apps are part of them, well, just learn not to let them keep running in the background.

It’s important to remember that Mobile Safari is *always* running, and that in and of itself could be an issue for CPU-hungry Flash apps. But this, no problem.

Plus, it gives developers another way of coding for the iPhone, and that’s an interesting angle, too.

Nemo

The problem is having Adobe being the gatekeeper/toll both on the Internet for video and graphic, when that is completely unnecessary, because HTML5 is available as a free international standard, and one that is much less resource intensive than Flash.

Dave Hamilton

The problem is having Adobe being the gatekeeper/toll both on the Internet for video and graphic, when that is completely unnecessary, because HTML5 is available as a free international standard, and one that is much less resource intensive than Flash.

Agreed, though this doesn’t really foster their role as gatekeeper (except to keep Flash alive, I guess): people are free to write apps without it, too, and do things the old fashioned way. wink

geoduck

Agreed, though this doesn?t really foster their role as gatekeeper (except to keep Flash alive, I guess): people are free to write apps without it, too, and do things the old fashioned way.

True, look at the number of sites STILL written only for IE.

Nemo

My dear Mr. Hamilton:  I offer that HTML5 is not the old fashioned way but rather is on the cutting edge of technology for encoding video and graphics on the Web.  It is Flash that is old fashioned and that risk placing too much power over the Web in Adobe’s hands.

Dave Hamilton

My dear Nemo: I was speaking of iPhone app development, and by “old fashioned way” I meant developing with XCode (as opposed to Flash). wink Indeed, was meant to be a joke.

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