Flash on the iPhone

Since Bobby Scoble posted a link to a funny video earlier about the lack of Flash on the iPhone, it has sparked more discussion about it on the comments thread. Here’s my take:

If the iPhone had Flash support, then it would be very easy to build fullscreen web-powered applications for the device which *could* look and operate just as good as the native UI – without using Apple’s tools or Safari/js/wigdets UI and platform.

Mobile versions of Flash are an issue due to the differing Flash versions they can support. Eg: FlashLite for many Symbian, etc mobile phone platforms and often PocketPC can only support previous versions of Flash, say v5 or v6, which have limited support for xml and flv stuff people might want these days. Though that’s not to say that a hugely compelling Flash application can’t be built in Flash 5 or 6, because it can! (QuickTime has rubbish support for recent Flash too, btw)

But Flash is VERY GOOD at creating and submitting FORMS – which is more or less what every Web2.0 application does, be it up front or around the back of the scenes via JavaScript functions ie: AJAX.  Flash developers who have been building online interactive apps for years have hae the AJAX mindset for a very long time, programming switches and routines to work behing the nice shiny vector graphics, which might then go and hit a web based script and database on the server.

Does anyone know of Apple and Abode are indeed talking or not? Let’s face it, it would make for a great announcement and demo by P.T.Jobsnum! ‘One more thing’

People like ‘Some Guy‘ don’t seem to be able to see the Wood for the Trees (‘Branches for the Apples’?) with suggestions that it’s all about YouTube and the comparison between FLV and MPEG H.264.

Ho hum.

8 Responses to “Flash on the iPhone”


  1. 1 jeffmcneill July 9, 2007 at 7:16 am

    Aloha Kosso,

    I think this is the battle of the runtime shaping up. SJ cannot bear to simply hand Adobe the laurel leaf and so keeps AIR (and Silverlight) at bay. For how long? That depends on how fast the hackers dice up the system to run it regardless. Soon, I hope!

    Cheers,
    Jeff McNeill
    http://jeffmcneill.com/

  2. 2 Brian Andrews July 12, 2007 at 6:23 pm

    The iPhone is going to change mobile video forever. Now that people have a great media device, that happens to also be their phone–which they will always have on them.

    This is huge. As the iPhone user base grows, a great market for mobile video will emerge.

    Apple is getting ready to update QuickTime to regain it’s place in the video delivery world. Apple got YouTube, which made Flash video what it is today, to convert to H.264. Repeat that a few times.

    We at http://www.hungryflix.com are very excited about the future of mobile video. We’ve been supporting the iPod with Video from day one. Now that the mobile video audience is set to explode we are ready to deliver great content.

  3. 3 Kosso July 13, 2007 at 1:20 am

    no way at all.

    The iPhone cant even record video!! So how it can change the future god only knows.

    The camera also has no settings whatsoever – I tried one last night. Not even a Flash.

    Just because Google are going to reencode video to H.264 as well as flash does not mean Apple are going to rule the world.

    jeez. fanboys. *rolls eyes*

  4. 4 Brian Andrews July 13, 2007 at 11:55 am

    You seem to have missed my point entirely. I could care less about recording video on a lens smaller than a dime. Who would? What type of cameras do you own right now? What types of content do you create?

    While the YouTube feature is a great distraction, that is not the content I am discussing.

    My point is that the iPhone is, potentially, the best media player in the market. Now, don’t underestimate that point. Here is the best media player for viewing MPEG4 content. Now, combine that fact with the fact that this is a phone–a device that most consumers always carry–and now you have the revolution.

    This is a great opportunity for independent filmmakers and video producers. I’m talking about people creating real quality content, not your typical YouTube fair. Indie filmmakers, video podcasters, how-to video producers all have an opportunity here.

    We’ve had iPods with video, PSPs and other media players for years but these still suffer from the fact that often times users just didn’t want to carry them along.

    I know that the iPhone is $499 and, today, not for everyone. But as with the iPod, prices will drop and features will be added. This will be the phone of choice for media savvy users.

    When the installed base grows indie content providers will have a number of users looking for great content. It’s time for us to deliver that content.

  5. 5 Kosso July 13, 2007 at 3:42 pm

    The PSP is a fantastic MPEG4 video viewing device. Amazing screen. The Achos range too.

    I have the Sony HDR-HC1 and another Sony DV cam.
    Also the N95 with its great 5megapixel Carl Zeiss lens with flash. This also has a host of settings for different lighting effects, exposures and focal lengths. It really is a great camera, which also records video.
    I do all sorts of content, but have been using my N95 alot for video blog diary-style entries.

    If I get out to the Australian Outback next week, I’ll be shooting some stuff with the HD camera too.

    Seriously, I was really shocked to learn that the iPhone didnt have a flash, nor any settings to accomodate different scenes and lighting situations.

    It’s a very very basic camera software – very photoBooth.

  6. 6 Kosso July 13, 2007 at 3:43 pm

    Look for my post about ‘closing the mobius loop’ re: mobile devices and content creation and publishing/distribution.

  7. 7 Kosso July 13, 2007 at 3:46 pm

    Also, you won’t be taking many calls on your phone after the battery bug kills the device after watching all those videos ;p

    heh

  8. 8 INSANE IN THE BRAIN FROM COCAIN August 8, 2007 at 11:08 pm

    WHEN WILL WE HAVE THE MIGHTY FLASH PLAYER SOON I HOPE ?:(


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Who is this ‘kosso’ anyway?

I am a 'Createc'. A creative technologist, entrepreneur/ hacker/ geek. Worked on building things on the web for over 12 years.

Used to work at BBC News interactive and created the publishing and delivery systems for video news to get distributed on huge screens in major railway stations around the country.

I left the BBC to become CTO / sole-lead architect/developer at podcast.com for three years.

I have now left them to build a start up a new system called 'Phreadz', which is a 'Social Multimedia Conversation Network', integrating everything that is 'V.I.T.A.L' to us on the web. Video, Images, Text, Audio and Links.

I built the whole thing my myself. I programmed every line of code and positioned every pixel. I'm looking forward to attracting an hiring new members of the team to help me out! :)

There are currently over 1000 happy and helpful beta testers on the system so far and one client of a white-labelled solution.



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