Speaking in Tongues

Or, “Translations from Adobelish to English of Danny Winkour’s Official Announcement of the Discontinuation of Development of Mobile Flash

Adobe is all about enabling designers and developers to create the most expressive content possible, regardless of platform or technology.

Adobe is all about bilking a couple of grand out of designers and developers every year or two by flogging badly designed, performance-hogging applications that do not much more than the version you learned in design school a decade ago.

For more than a decade, Flash has enabled the richest content to be created and deployed on the web by reaching beyond what browsers could do. It has repeatedly served as a blueprint for standardizing new technologies in HTML.

Over the last ten years, people have, with a few exceptions, used Flash to shoehorn “rich”, print-like design onto the web, as well as kludging video support into it in the ugliest way possible.

Over the past two years, we’ve delivered Flash Player for mobile browsers and brought the full expressiveness of the web to many mobile devices.

We’ve spent the last couple of years trying to prove Steve Jobs wrong, and we have failed miserably.

However, HTML5 is now universally supported on major mobile devices, in some cases exclusively. This makes HTML5 the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms. We are excited about this, and will continue our work with key players in the HTML community, including Google, Apple, Microsoft and RIM, to drive HTML5 innovation they can use to advance their mobile browsers.

We’ve thrown in the towel, and we’re finally going to just go along with what everyone else has been doing for a while now.

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 continue to develop Flash Player in the browser to work with new mobile device configurations (chipset, browser, OS version, etc.) following the upcoming release of Flash Player 11.1 for Android and BlackBerry PlayBook. We will of course continue to provide critical bug fixes and security updates for existing device configurations. We will also allow our source code licensees to continue working on and release their own implementations.

We surrender.

These changes will allow us to increase investment in HTML5

We’re finally going to put our effort where it always should have been directed.

and innovate with Flash where it can have most impact for the industry, including advanced gaming and premium video. Flash Player 11 for PC browsers just introduced dozens of new features, including hardware accelerated 3D graphics for console-quality gaming and premium HD video with content protection.

Flash now does high-definition without totally crippling your computer. It’s still locked-down with DRM, but hey, it’s high-definition! Oh, and by “console quality”, we mean Playstation 2 quality, only with six times the processor requirement and fans going crazy.

Flash developers can take advantage of these features, and all that our Flash tooling has to offer, to reach more than a billion PCs through their browsers and to package native apps with AIR that run on hundreds of millions of mobile devices through all the popular app stores, including the iTunes App Store, Android Market, Amazon Appstore for Android and BlackBerry App World.

And better yet, out appliations are still going to create tools to help the unscrupulous and lazy try and shovel crap into App Stores for all platforms!

We are already working on Flash Player 12 and a new round of exciting features which we expect to again advance what is possible for delivering high definition entertainment experiences. We will continue to leverage our experience with Flash to accelerate our work with the W3C and WebKit to bring similar capabilities to HTML5 as quickly as possible, just as we have done with CSS Shaders. And, we will design new features in Flash for a smooth transition to HTML5 as the standards evolve so developers can confidently invest knowing their skills will continue to be leveraged.

The ship is sinking, but we reckon we can shake a few million more out of the passengers as it goes down.

We are super excited about the next generations of HTML5 and Flash. Together they offer developers and content publishers great options for delivering compelling web and application experiences across PCs and devices. There is already amazing work being done that is pushing the newest boundaries, and we can’t wait to see what is still yet to come!

Please keep buying our stuff.

Further Reading