Flash for Android Officially Gone from Google Play

| Analysis

Adobe officially pulled Flash for Android from the Google Play store on Wednesday, all but ending the dream of mobile Flash as a viable platform. The move was announced on an Adobe blog post on June 28th, but Flash remained available on Google Play until Wednesday.

Adobe Apps on Google Play

Current Adobe Apps on Google Play

In that blog post, Adobe wrote, “Beginning August 15th we will use the configuration settings in the Google Play Store to limit continued access to Flash Player updates to only those devices that have Flash Player already installed. Devices that do not have Flash Player already installed are increasingly likely to be incompatible with Flash Player and will no longer be able to install it from the Google Play Store after August 15th.”

At one time, Flash was the center of much invented controversy. It started with Apple’s decision not to allow Flash on the iPhone—and eventually the iPad. The late Steve Jobs penned a letter in 2010 titled “Thoughts on Flash” where he derided the technology as problematic and a battery suck for mobile devices.

“We have routinely asked Adobe to show us Flash performing well on a mobile device, any mobile device, for a few years now,” he wrote. “We have never seen it.”

That touched off a war of words from Adobe, who defended Flash, and Apple competitors who decided that the way to compete with the iPhone and iPad was to offer Flash. Companies like Research In Motion tried to make it a rallying cry for those who wanted the full Web experience on their mobile devices.

Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen went so far as to predict the demise of the iPad in June of 2011 based in part on the lack of Flash support.

Android fans and OEMs also tried to make a rallying cry, but in the end no one cared. Adobe did release Flash for Android, but it was criticized by many users and pundits and never took off. It turns out that Flash didn’t help Research In Motion’s BlackBerry or Playbook and that Android was able to do quite well without Flash.

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Comments

sflocal

And the fandroid community is quietly scurrying to the back of the room in the hopes no one will call them on this.

Good riddance Flash.  You lived way longer than you should have.

Guess a certain vocal member here on TMO (You there Bosco?) will have to find a new subject to preach the demise of iOS.

palenoue

Flash is still a good animation tool and I recommend it to people who want to learn animation.  It’s just when Adobe pushed it into web interactivity that things mutated out of control.  While Edge is shaping up nicely for web animation and interaction (for non-programmers) there’s no way to export an Edge animation to video, so I hope Flash sticks around for several more years.

RonMacGuy

Guess a certain vocal member here on TMO (You there Bosco?) will have to find a new subject to preach the demise of iOS.

sflocal, I would have used the word “cowardly” instead of quietly, but I push the boundaries of being polite I guess.  Bosco believes using “ignore” is the brave thing to do instead of facing his past behavior.

Here is one of my favorite discussions from June 2011.

Bosco at his finest - passive aggressive and very condescending.  A hilarious read.  Here are some of my favorites:

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?

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.

‘Flash isn’t anywhere near as bad on android devices?’ Then why is it dead?

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

RonMacGuy

By the way, is Narayen still Adobe CEO?  They should have gotten rid of that guy for the completely wrong things he said.

Bryan Chaffin

Flash is still a good animation tool and I recommend it to people who want to learn animation.? It?s just when Adobe pushed it into web interactivity that things mutated out of control.? While Edge is shaping up nicely for web animation and interaction (for non-programmers) there?s no way to export an Edge animation to video, so I hope Flash sticks around for several more years.

I agree, palenoue. Flash remains a great animation tool. And it was so very cool (and important) in the early days of the mainstreaming of the Web.

Good points.

daemon

?Flash isn?t anywhere near as bad on android devices?? Then why is it dead?

Adobe chose to kill it… I use flash every day on my Android devices, it’s wonderful.

skipaq

It’s party time. May Flash rest without peace. One big pain in the rear gone except on desktops :(

daemon

Apparently you aren’t aware of the hundreds of thousands of websites that are flash only skipaq….

skipaq

Except for one site, I try to avoid them. One man boycott against a system hogging and bug infested pain I prefer to live without. smile

RonMacGuy

Adobe chose to kill it? I use flash every day on my Android devices, it?s wonderful.

No offense, daemon, but it may work well every single day on all of your wonderful android devices (although, I have my suspicions on your truthfulness) but for Adobe to kill it you must be in the minority.  Like it or not, in the 2011 reference I linked to above, I started pulling out all of the complaints in the 4.5 star reviews.  Incredible amount of complaints across an incredible number of android devices.  Just saying that Apple/Steve Jobs called it big-time on Flash for mobile devices.  They were so right.

Given the market share growth of android, why would Adobe kill it now if it was working so well?  Huge selling point over Apple devices, no?  Why kill it now when there is nothing but upside in android opportunity?  Sure, Apple’s hundreds of millions of devices don’t allow Flash, but why not continue developing for android?  I suspect android fragmentation and Adobe having to dedicate tons of developers to buy every single new android devices that comes out to see why Flash doesn’t work like it’s supposed to on it.

So tell us about all of the wonderful flash pages you reference daily on your android devices.  You must browse a lot more different pages than I do, because I rarely stumble across a page that requires flash anymore.

RonMacGuy

Except for one site, I try to avoid them. One man boycott against a system hogging and bug infested pain I prefer to live without.

skipaq, I suspect you are part of millions upon millions of those boycotting against Flash.  In Firefox I pulled up the “Flashblock” add-on and there have been 13,697,066.  I use it, and it’s wonderful.

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