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Flash Support Confirmed For Android 2.2 282

Posted by Soulskill
from the but-it's-so-much-easier-to-just-write-a-rant dept.
farble1670 writes "In an interview with the New York Times, Google's Andy Rubin confirmed that Android 2.2 will have support for Flash 10.1. Quoting: '[Rubin] promised that full support for Adobe’s Flash standard was coming in the next version of Android, code-named Froyo, for frozen yogurt (previous Android releases were called Cupcake, Donut, and Eclair, and are represented outside Building 44 on the Google campus with giant sculptures of the desserts). Sometimes being open "means not being militant about the things consumers are actually enjoying," he said.'"
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Flash Support Confirmed For Android 2.2

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  • by MasterOfGoingFaster (922862) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:20AM (#32056244) Homepage

    I hope it doesn't turn out that Flash is the x86 code of the Internet age.

    While I dislike Apple's my-way-or-the-highway approach, I'll give them credit for sticking to their guns about open standards for the web. This will be interesting to see what happens with Flash, given the growing gap between devices that support it and those that don't.

    • by ThoughtMonster (1602047) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:33AM (#32056340) Homepage
      ...and how is .h264 an open standard, again?
      • by paimin (656338) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @12:21PM (#32057152)
        Keep up, it's not Flash vs h.264, it's Flash vs Javascript and HTML5. Video format is not at question here. You're looking for the h.264 vs Theora war, that's in a different article.

        Apple being douchey about video formats doesn't change the fact that they are fully supporting open web scripting standards.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by DrXym (126579)
          Keep up, it's not Flash vs h.264, it's Flash vs Javascript and HTML5. Video format is not at question here. You're looking for the h.264 vs Theora war, that's in a different article.

          And HTML5 pretty much loses unless we're talking relatively sedentary content. That's not a slight on HTML5, it's just not built for timing critical stuff such as animation. I expect performance is all over the shop too from one browser to the next rather than the consistency Flash brings. Where it can hope to claw share from

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by BitZtream (692029)

        Perhaps you should realize that your definition of 'open standard' isn't one that anyone outside of the OSS community subscribes to.

        It is available to anyone to implement anyway they care to without any discrimination in who gets to buy it for what purpose.

        You can fully examine the standard.

        Just because it costs money does not mean it isn't open.

        OSS people have just gotten retarded and confuse 'open' and 'free' as if they are interchangable, and then have several different definitions of free that are used

    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:35AM (#32056346)

      "I'll give them credit for sticking to their guns about open standards for the web"

      Tell us you're being sarcastic...

      No one could possibly be stupid enough to take Steve Jobs' rambling tirades against 'teh Flash' as some sort of effort to support 'open standards'.

      Flash allows developers and users to freely bypass Apple's tollbooth for content.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        What I find particularly ironic about this thread is that Android's browser uses Webkit [wikipedia.org]. That's right, the open phone that's the enemy of Apple's uber-evil closed system is running a fork of khtml created and supported by Apple. Without Apple, Android probably wouldn't be as good. It just goes to show, somebody modded +5 on slashdot doesn't need to actually need to know anything about technology, they just need to be able to denigrate whatever technology company is currently the market leader.
        • by centuren (106470) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @03:50PM (#32058908) Homepage Journal

          What I find particularly ironic about this thread is that Android's browser uses Webkit. That's right, the open phone that's the enemy of Apple's uber-evil closed system is running a fork of khtml created and supported by Apple. Without Apple, Android probably wouldn't be as good. It just goes to show, somebody modded +5 on slashdot doesn't need to actually need to know anything about technology, they just need to be able to denigrate whatever technology company is currently the market leader.

          You can make that connection if you like, but as you said, it's a khtml fork. It's silly to speculate about what Android would be without Apple's support of Webkit, as Google could have done lots of things for their browser engine, including supporting and developing a khtml fork.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by sonicmerlin (1505111)
      I recommend you read arstechnica's rebuttal of Steve Jobs's claims. Pot, meet kettle indeed. http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/2010/04/pot-meet-kettle-a-response-to-steve-jobs-letter-on-flash.ars [arstechnica.com]
      • That wasn't a rebuttal from ars, it was written by the operations manager of the Free Software Foundation. It helps to frame it properly, since that guy has a definite desire to see a proprietary platform like iPhone fail.

        • by Bigjeff5 (1143585) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @12:44PM (#32057372)

          It is a rebuttal from Ars, because they requested that he be a guest writer. The article itself also frames it pretty clearly for you, so there is no need to frame it again.

          While he is absolutely on the extreme end of the open source argument (he thinks just the software being open isn't good enough, but that everything supporting that software should be open as well), he nails the hypocrisy of Jobs's letter.

          First, despite what the ITU-T calls it, h.264 is not an open standard, there is nothing about them that is different than any other proprietary industrial standard. It has very restrictive licensing terms that are not publicly available. They can and will sue you if they catch you implementing h.264 without paying them for the privilege.

          Second, every time Jobs uses "Adobe" in his letter, you can replace it with "Apple", and every time he uses "Flash" you can replace it with "Cocoa" or "iPhone OS" or "App Store". Thy are completely interchangeable in the complaint, so Jobs very plainly is not at all interested in maintaining free and open standards on the web. Apple is no different than Adobe in this regard, they are both struggling for control over their users.

          Contrast that with Google, who is saying "Yeah, you can use that if you want, we don't mind, but look here's something even better and it's free!" Obviously event he great Google isn't perfect, but they at least don't share the pot-kettle relationship of Apple and Adobe.

      • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

        by Arguendo (931986)

        I recommend you read arstechnica's rebuttal of Steve Jobs's claims.

        I want my five minutes back. This editorial is terrible. Jobs made a distinction between proprietary standards for content on the web and proprietary tools to access that content. This editorial completely glosses over that distinction and argues that all proprietary software is bad. Seriously? I'm all for touting the benefits of open source and free software but there's a place for proprietary software as well. If you don't like the iphone's proprietary software, buy another phone. It's not like there ar

    • by Junta (36770) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:44AM (#32056430)

      While I dislike Apple's my-way-or-the-highway approach, I'll give them credit for sticking to their guns about open standards for the web.

      The problem I have is while they dress it up as sticking to their guns on open standards, their true motive is they want people to write to the proprietary technology of iPhone apps instead of flash apps. They make legitimate criticisms of Adobe as tying up the web in a proprietary technology while at the same time clearly moving to punish any developers that would want to target iPhone+others using cross-platform tools rather than limited and proprietary iPhone only apps.

      I can't get excited over the concept of rooting for either Adobe or Apple in their little pissing contest. I dislike what both want the industry to look like.

    • by nurb432 (527695)

      I hope it doesn't turn out that Flash is the x86 code of the Internet age.

      While I dislike Apple's my-way-or-the-highway approach, I'll give them credit for sticking to their guns about open standards for the web. This will be interesting to see what happens with Flash, given the growing gap between devices that support it and those that don't.

      Sure looks like it, and as far as im concerned, its a good thing, long over due. It promoted sloppy bloated webpages that slow every computer i have.. Its insecure.. I could go on and on..

      AND as sites like Youtube and Facebook moves away from it, there really is no point in seeing it surviving. This is 2010.. We can do better.

      Now, if we can get something done with PDF and clean it up...

    • by jo42 (227475)

      Come back in a few weeks (months?) when Android 2.2 with Flash 10.1 is in the wild -- and note how much it really, really sucks on a mobile device. Heck, I'd even venture to wager a monetary quantity (100,000 quatloos) on the amount of Flash on mobile device suckage (100%).

  • Enjoying? (Score:3, Funny)

    by nicolas.kassis (875270) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:23AM (#32056270)
    More like forced to enjoy due to lack of suitable replacement currently. Flash sucks, programming flash sucks, Youtube and cie are awesome but require flash to work. I agree (for different reason as Jobs) that flash shouldn't be encouraged. I'm not too excited at the idea of having run on my phone. Now section 3.3.1 is a whole other ball game of dick move by Apple. A flash to native iPhone tool or any other language X to native iPhone app are useful is an stupid money grab by Apple. But that's their choice, I'll keep enjoying my android phone and try to avoid helping pollute the web by never developing with Flash. Yes my site looks like it was made in 1995 why do you ask?
    • And yes I know HTML 5 is on the way (I'm working on projects that make use of it right now) but it's not their yet.
  • Adobe vs Apple (Score:4, Insightful)

    by FuckingNickName (1362625) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:23AM (#32056274) Journal

    In the left corner we have Adobe, who demonstrates the power of the web enhanced with cross-platform plugins, but makes little effort to cooperate on forming the albeit openly published Flash VM spec and makes a fairly unstable reference implementation (not helped by the lack of process isolation in browsers).

    In the right corner we have Apple, whose proposal of the extra-DOM canvas element to troll Adobe (rather than following the example of SVG) further complicated the monolithic monster that is W3C's HTML standard.

    In the centre we have consumers, who get to enjoy that there are so many standards to choose from.

  • Hey Google (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Qwavel (733416) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:38AM (#32056384)

    I'm thrilled that I'm able to use whatever software I want on Android. The problem is, I don't actually want Flash - I just wanted the ability to decide for myself.

    So, that's great that you will be supporting it, but please let me turn it off or uninstall it from my phone.

    Thanks.

    • by GameGod0 (680382) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @01:07PM (#32057612)

      I'm thrilled that I'm able to use whatever software I want on Android. The problem is, I don't actually want Flash - I just wanted the ability to decide for myself.

      So, that's great that you will be supporting it, but please let me turn it off or uninstall it from my phone.

      Thanks.

      I'm not sure why this keeps coming up, since nobody that ever replies clearly has ever owned an Android phone. My HTC Hero, which supports Flash 7 out-of-the-box, has an option in its browser to disable plugins.

      You have the option to disable Flash on your Android phone right now, and it's FUD to keep suggesting that you won't be able to disable it again in the future.

  • Choice is good (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gun26 (151620) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:42AM (#32056414)
    Unlike a certain dictatorial and litigious cellphone manufacturer, Google is giving their users a choice. Flash haters certainly have reason for their dislike, but I think the decision of whether to use it or not should be left in the hands of users and webmasters, where it belongs. Good move on this, Google.
  • ...can't WAIT to play FARMVILLE on my PHONE!!! instead of click click click click click I'll get to tap tap tap tap tap tap!
  • My Thoughts (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sonicmerlin (1505111) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @10:48AM (#32056460)

    To be honest I'm rather surprised it's taken this long for Adobe to release a portable version of Flash for smartphones. I think this speaks to how cozy and lazy Adobe had become with their control of the market. Jobs's remarks were indeed hypocritical, but if he is to praised for anything it's for lighting a fire under Adobe's cushion.

    I also think Jobs's "letter about Flash" was far from coincidental. Now that his competitors will have a defining feature that makes their smartphone experience significantly more enjoyable, Jobs either had to relent or push on with an self-inflicted platform deficiency. The letter was just him setting down the battle lines.

    Competition is great, but Apple's use of their control of the iPhone hardware to control the iPhone software market is anti-competitive, and I for one am happy to see Google stick it to them.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by AndrewNeo (979708)

      Not only has Flash been available on other smartphones (Windows Mobile, N900, etc.) but it's also been available on Android phones with the HTC Sense UI. Now it'll be in every stock 2.2 phone, which will cover hopefully all newer Android-running phones (aka ones running 2.1 now)

      • Re:My Thoughts (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Invid72 (1638287) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @03:38PM (#32058810)
        You are confusing Flash lite, a limited subset of Flash with "Full Flash" in Adobe parlance, which is coming with 10.1. No shipping smartphone save the Nokia N900 ships with a full featured Flash runtime.

        The Maemo plugin is a sluggish performer from what I've heard too. Adobe really needs to hit the Flash 10.1 for Android release out of the park, or risk validating all of Jobs' criticisms.
  • This was my comment on the previous /. story about Flash not going to be supported under iPhone, moded 'Troll' as you see. [slashdot.org] My current comment is the exact opposite of that one.

    This is a disaster! Flash must be made into a pariah or maybe just a piranha of the Internet. It became a de-facto standard for playing video in a browser and supplanted development of an open standard, which was so late to arrive obviously, it only has appeared in html5. It is insane, if the rest of the Internet was based on simi

  • When will they start putting the current webkit builds with websocket support on these devices?

  • by sparkydevil (261897) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @11:03AM (#32056562)

    It's extremely annoying to see Mr Jobs deny me access to customers based on his idea of perfection.

    As a small restaurant/club owner, I spent a lot of time creating a Flash-based website so that it would be more appealing to customers than an HTML site. Is Mr Jobs really suggesting that I should now create an app for my business instead?

    • Yes, or a well styled non-Flash using website.
    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @11:23AM (#32056734)

      As a small restaurant/club owner, I spent a lot of time creating a Flash-based website so that it would be more appealing to customers than an HTML site. Is Mr Jobs really suggesting that I should now create an app for my business instead?

      So, let me get this straight: instead of doing the rational thing to maximize the number of users who could benefit from the content of your site by first presenting the content with the most broadly supported subset of HTML before building a "premium" presentation of the content that would be accessible to a smaller set of users using a technology that is less universal like Flash, you excluded many potential customers by building a flash-only site that they could not use from the many web-enabled devices (including the iPhone) that don't have Flash, and you blame Steve Jobs for limiting the reach of your app by not correcting your decision by bringing Flash to the iPhone?

      Maybe you need to consider that the problem here isn't with Steve Jobs.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        using a technology that is less universal like Flash

        Flash is available on something like 99% of all computers, and that final percentage is mostly people who are actively avoiding Flash or using browsers that don't support HTML5 in any case.

        you blame Steve Jobs for limiting the reach of your app by not correcting your decision by bringing Flash to the iPhone?

        Something like 75% of all mobile devices will support Flash. Yeah, it's really his problem that iPhone users are going to be left in the cold.

        Steve Jobs needs to wake up and realize that there are just some things that can't be done without Flash. HTML5 is NOT a drop-in solution. In fact, in many ways, it's considerably w

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by larry bagina (561269)

          Something like 75% of all mobile devices will support Flash.

          But not today. And his flash monstrosity designed for 1024x768 won't be very appealing on a 320x480, 4" touch screen.

    • by Karlt1 (231423) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @11:54AM (#32056952)

      As a small restaurant/club owner, I spent a lot of time creating a Flash-based website so that it would be more appealing to customers than an HTML site.

      What makes you think Flash would be more appealing to people visiting your website? When I go to a restaurant's web site I want to see a menu, the hours of operations, and maybe a picture of some of their entrees.

      • Yup, there are many times in the past where I've wanted to order from http://wingsover.com/ [wingsover.com] but since the menu is behind flash, I end up ordering from somewhere else... Flash-only for a restaurant is a very bad idea, it really doesn't make business sense. Not only does it exclude smartphones but it also excludes any office where flash is blocked administratively, limiting lunch ordering options...
    • by dingen (958134)

      Especially the little guy shouldn't put hundreds of dollars into Adobe Flash Professional to create slow-loading, unsemantic binary blobs and call it a "website". Your customers will be much happier with a snappy search engine optimized standard-compliant HTML page, a good looking CSS stylesheet and maybe some fancy and gracefully degrading Javascript effects as icing on the cake. There are loads of freely available open source content managment systems out there with support for themes which will provide y

    • As a small eCommerce business owner, I spent a lot of time working on making my site appealing and functional - and as a result I chose NOT to use Flash. It's slow, cumbersome, does not work with all browsers (often due to users actively disabling it), does not play well with accessibility add-ons, and is arguably more difficult to maintain. I chose to use ASP due to my own experience with it but the back-end technology isn't important, the output presented to the browser is simply HTML with CSS. My site
    • by ceoyoyo (59147)

      "I spent a lot of time creating a Flash-based website so that it would be more appealing to customers than an HTML site."

      I think I found your problem. Like so many things, it can be traced back to a faulty assumption.

    • Is Mr Jobs really suggesting that I should now create an app for my business instead?

      No, he's suggesting you tailor your website to what your customers are using, not what you're expecting them to use.

  • by MadUndergrad (950779) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @11:20AM (#32056712)

    This is great! Now whenever I need to find out what does or does not support flash, I can just come to flashdot! Seems to be all that's posted here nowadays.

  • by Spencerian (465343) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @11:30AM (#32056780) Homepage Journal

    Flash wasn't built for mobile devices.

    If you want it to suck cycles on your desktop or most laptops, that's not a problem, for your PC or Mac has them and electrical power to spare, generally.

    But Flash sucks the electrical life out of mobile devices. This isn't theory, it's fact. Take your laptop off AC power and see it die after a few YouTube videos or Flash games.

    I'm not against Flash. I'm against it on devices that must be reliable and are built with limited processor and electrical power.

    Flash is the Web standard of .NET. It's sloppy. It's developer hasn't made great inroads to optimize it or secure it. It is flexible, but some of its features make little sense on a multi-touch screen. And only Adobe makes it.-

    If Adobe wants to side with another platform for Flash AND make it work, great. But apparently Apple doesn't want to be Adobe's guinea pig and it has every reason not to.

    Apple has already dealt before with competitors both inside and out who change their business plan and as a result, leave Apple twisting in the wind. It's good business practice not to let your business become overly dependent on others. Hell, Adobe was in that situation when Apple began to flounder. So why would Apple emulate Adobe in that regard?

    As for Flash on the Android? Let's see it, then. What doesn't kill your phone only makes it stronger.

    Perhaps Apple will have Billy Dee Williams in for some endorsements, standing over a person with a locked, overheated phone.

    " Problem with your Droid? "

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by DragonWriter (970822)

      Flash is the Web standard of .NET.

      I'm pretty sure that Silverlight is the Web standard of .NET.

    • by gaspyy (514539) on Saturday May 01, 2010 @12:00PM (#32056996)

      Flash 10.1 uses hardware acceleration for video, so presumably battery life will be longer.
      Also, on Adroid, Flash delivers better performance than HTML5/Canvas (http://visualrinse.com/2010/04/15/benchmarking-html5-vs-flash-player-10-1-on-mobile-devices/).

      Regarding "some of its features make little sense on a multi-touch screen" -- nothing springs to mind, care to elaborate? It does have rollover support but that doesn't mean that you have to use it. It has multi-touch support too...

      As for security... I can only recall 3 major flaws in the last 5 years; maybe there are more but it's still not more insecure than Java or IE.

      • by F-3582 (996772)
        Cool. But as long as the rest of the rendering is still done by the CPU (vector graphics, for Christ's sake), it will still drain battery like crazy. Just look at this [weebls-stuff.com] video (in full-screen, please)!
    • Flash wasn't built for mobile devices.

      If you want it to suck cycles on your desktop or most laptops, that's not a problem, for your PC or Mac has them and electrical power to spare, generally.

      But Flash sucks the electrical life out of mobile devices. This isn't theory, it's fact. Take your laptop off AC power and see it die after a few YouTube videos or Flash games.

      Flash 10.1 is built for mobile devices, as was Flash Lite -- which was just a bit limited, but it's been around for about 9 years,. 10.1 takes full advantage of GPU acceleration for both video playback and drawing vectors, which helps out for both performance and battery life.

      All the devices that are supporting 10.1 allow full access to the GPU, so battery life is no more an issue for Flash on them, than any other platform, it will come down to the competence of the developer, not the toolkit itself.

  • Something that's often missed is that "Flash" is a set of various versions and video formats. As I understand it, mobile Flash 10.1 will not support Actionscript 1.0 and 2.0, only giving you Actionscript 3.0. How many websites and games were made in the older format and continue to be?

    Not only that... this is weird but according to this chart [appleinsider.com] it won't support H.264 but instead have On2 video format. That would be the guys that Google just bought. Perhaps this is another part of why they're supporting fl

    • by JackAxe (689361)
      Holy crap man, that's FUD you're spreading. It's nothing but lies from a pro-apple site.

      You need ActionScript 3 in order to access new APIs like mult-touch for mobile devices. 10.1 mobile will playback all AS1/2 content, but to state the obvious, any developer that's concerned about their content working on a mobile platform should update it accordingly, which is true for any platform.

      No, 10.1 mobile fully supports H.264 video and it's fully GPU accelerated. Flash adopted this format back in 2008 a

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