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Android Bug Media Software

Flash On Android Fails To Impress 436

Posted by timothy
from the because-you-have-failed-to-achieve dept.
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Neil McAllister test-drives Flash Player 10.2 for Android 3.0 and finds its shortcomings too sweeping to be chalked up to beta status. 'The worst part is the player's inconsistent behavior. This gets really frustrating when there's lots of HTML and Flash content mixed on a Web page. The UI turns into a tug-of-war between the browser and the Flash Player, where each touch produces varying effects, seemingly at random,' McAllister writes. 'As far as I could tell, there was one thing and one thing only that the Flash Player for Android 3.0 accomplished successfully. On the stock Android browser, Flash content is invisible, so you don't notice Flash-based advertising. With the Flash Player installed, however, all those ads suddenly appear where once there were none, their animated graphics leaping and scuttling under your fingertips like cockroaches on a dinner tray — some achievement.'"
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Flash On Android Fails To Impress

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  • The Whole Web! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wsxyz (543068) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:12PM (#35820858)

    With the Flash Player installed, however, all those ads suddenly appear where once there were none, their animated graphics leaping and scuttling under your fingertips like cockroaches on a dinner tray

    Oh so that's what everyone means when they say flash lets you see "the whole web".

  • Were Apple right? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Computershack (1143409) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:12PM (#35820864)
    Ever wonder why Apple didn't want to put Flash support on the iPhone? It would appear to have been a shrewd move.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:14PM (#35820888)

    Flash is occasionally useful - some sites won't even show you any content without it, or like Strongbad have their content primarily in flash. But why on earth would anyone run flash without a flashblock extension in the browser? That's just idiotic!

    Seriously, maybe i'm just an old fart, but whatever happened to the user being the one in control of his or her own computer? Why do more people not insist on having control over their machines? Why would you trust any random flash content *by bloody default*?

    SOME flash is useful. SOME flash is malicious. SOME flash is merely advertising. The only thing that makes sense is to run that flash which is useful. Arbitrarily running any flash at all - sheesh, would you let anyone in the world borrow your car? Your house? Or would you only permit that of people you trusted? Why should your computer be any different?

  • by perpenso (1613749) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:17PM (#35820924)

    As far as I could tell, there was one thing and one thing only that the Flash Player for Android 3.0 accomplished successfully

    Actually there seems to be two things. Besides getting advertisements working again it seems to also suggest that Apple may have had a point that Flash performance was disappointing.

  • by bit trollent (824666) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:17PM (#35820930) Homepage

    By setting the browser to enable plug-ins on demand, unwanted flash ads appear as clickable boxes, and and flash object in a page can be loaded by clicking it.

    Since nobody is likely to rewrite the whole internet to exclude flash (espeically since there are old browsers that practically require flash) it's really nice to be able to have flash when you need it.

    I've used flash many times on my phone, and my only complaint is that the phone can be a bit wonky about registering clicks. But this happens with 'clever' html too.

    Pro-tip: if your web browser is acting weird (not registering clicks etc..), tip your phone into landscape mode and then back again. You'd be surprised how reliably that fixes weird flash and html problems.

  • Re:Could it be? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by thetartanavenger (1052920) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:20PM (#35820966)
    No. Flash isn't necessarily ideal but I'd rather have the choice. There have been times when I've been out and wanting to view a specific video, listen to a radio station etc where there wouldn't be an iphone app. You have the choice to completely disable it, I think possibly even uninstall it, and easily set it to only on demand... Whereas with Apple, you have none...
  • by DavidinAla (639952) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:26PM (#35821052)
    Can't people finally start admitting that maybe Apple was doing the right thing -- for users' long term experience -- in trying to get rid of Flash for mobile devices? It's so bizarre how hatred of Apple and Steve Jobs drives some tech people to irrationally support a lousy and proprietary plugin that we CAN move beyond. Flash was a great thing earlier in the history of the web, but it's time to leave it behind. The only reason the Android crowd loves it is because Apple was the first to admit that it was time to leave it behind. It's become a badge of honor to be able to check that box as a feature -- even if we would be better off (long term for sure) without it.
  • Re:Could it be? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by repetty (260322) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:27PM (#35821078) Homepage

    No. Flash isn't necessarily ideal but I'd rather have the choice. There have been times when I've been out and wanting to view a specific video, listen to a radio station etc where there wouldn't be an iphone app. You have the choice to completely disable it, I think possibly even uninstall it, and easily set it to only on demand... Whereas with Apple, you have none...

    I'm kinda like you -- I prefer to have choices.

    The general public, however, does not think that way at all. They aren't interested in choices and certainly don't want to fucking think about it. Please don't bother them.

    Apple is a profanely profitable company because that nail that kinda stuff.

  • Re:Could it be? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DCstewieG (824956) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:30PM (#35821110)

    Also remember that we're coming up on 4 years since the iPhone came out and was ridiculed for not supporting Flash. 4 years of vastly increasing mobile computing power and memory. 4 years for Adobe to get its act together. 4 years to see why HTML5 video and animation is important.

    4 years. If this is what we're seeing now, just imagine what Jobs was shown way back when the decision was made.

  • Wrong question (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Rix (54095) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:31PM (#35821122)

    Yes, having flash render by default is stupid. It's primarily used by ads - which bring no benefit to the user.

    Having it *available* is useful, and there Apple is wrong.

  • by CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @03:38PM (#35821206)

    If Linux users copped this kind of attitude for Flash, they would be portrayed as RMS worshiping hippies with little grip on reality by the same exact Apple fanboys that get their hate-on for Flash.

    It's like Linux users advocating that Microsoft port IE6 to Linux to be able to view websites that need it rather than to demand that webmasters code to standards.
    Android users are so desperate for something to differentiate themselves from iOS they are fighting on the wrong side here.

  • by gilesjuk (604902) <giles.jones@NOspam.zen.co.uk> on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:12PM (#35821572)

    Flash was built for the desktop. Devices with big screens, keyboards and mice.

    Cramming it into a smartphone with a limited battery life has never really made sense.

    Flash on the web seems to be only used for a few things:

    1. Video, which can and has been done in other ways

    2. Games, plenty of games in the app stores.

    3. Presentations, which I imagine few people bother to use?

    4. Adverts, which most people don't like.

    5. IM, which can be done with AJAX and existing HTML scripting.

  • by geek (5680) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:13PM (#35821596)

    Apple was "right" in removing choice? It isn't even an option on iOS. I can "choose" to remove it from android if I want, just like on my desktop. If people don't want it, they can remove it. Removing CHOICE is ignorant, arrogant, and truly the Apple way.

  • Yes, it was right (Score:2, Insightful)

    by SuperKendall (25149) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:32PM (#35821822)

    Apple was "right" in removing choice?

    Yes, that was right. Because letting users make a choice you know is bad, is a bad idea. It is "removing choice" that they don't offer a "crash browser now" in Safari button too, yet that is not bad...

    Technical users that REALLY REALLY want Flash can still get it via jailbreaking. But I wouldn't even bother because Flash on mobile is a totally senseless thing that doesn't help me at all.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:37PM (#35821898)

    The Flash debate wasn't just about Flash. For many of us, it was simply an example of Apple's needless lock-down.

    The thing is, it wasn't needless. As this article shows Apple made the call that users normal users not technically astute enough to make good choices, would use try to use Flash and it just wouldn't work for them.

    So Apple removed it and tried (and succeeded) in convincing many sites to support the iPhone/iPad without Flash.

    Users are better off because they get sites that actually work on mobile devices. Website designers are better off because they have fewer Flash components to maintain.

    The only people complaining are the technical elite here on Slashdot, who are ignoring the real benefits for users this choice resulted in. Lots of people here just want to have a choice because it exists, without thinking about what is better for 90% of the people who use the device.

    Lets abandon the past of abusing users and really design systems that real people can use. The rest of us technical people can easily override these simplistic defaults and do what we like. But let us not pollute the base platform with choices that hurt people who don't understand how to stop the pain.

  • Re:Could it be? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by stewbacca (1033764) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:38PM (#35821904)

    Flash works very well on my android phone.

    Given the evidence to the contrary, I'm beginning to wonder who the real fanboy is...

  • So the solution to fixing an infestation of proprietary software into what is supposed to be an open web is to just keep using the proprietary software? And the reason is because some web developer picked a proprietary method of embedding videos, and shouldn't be bothered to change them? Do you feel the same for all the web developers who picked the proprietary Real Video solution a while back?

    Apple blocking Flash is one of the best things to happen to try and get a proper open way of doing video on the web. Real, Quicktime, and Windows Media were all past attempts we are glad failed now. Flash took over for a while, but it's time to go join it's proprietary buddies of the past.

  • by PCM2 (4486) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @04:59PM (#35822182) Homepage

    So, my choices are ads for free news sites, or, The Daily? I'll go with option #3 - AdFree, which blocks all ad content on an Android (rooted) device.

    I swear, you'd think people like InfoWorld's Neil McAllister were as smart as they sound. Oh, but wait, he wants the "default" experience. M'kay, then he shouldn't run "beta" products.

    You're a pretty clever guy, I guess. So how do you figure a mainstream tech publication is going to run a review of a user experience that you can only get if you root your tablet? How many Xooms do you think Motorola has sold, how many of those are going to be rooted, and how many of those rooted Xooms are going to have a good user experience running Flash? (Read the review for a hint.)

    And yes, I am InfoWorld's Neil McAllister.

  • Re:Could it be? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jo_ham (604554) <joham999@@@gmail...com> on Thursday April 14, 2011 @06:01PM (#35822734)

    I'm starting to wonder if the lady doth protest too much.

    You might want to start from the premise that not everyone who writes something critical about something you like is a fanboy or paid shill of the "opposition". That level of cynicism speaks volumes about the fragility of your own belief in the thing you are "protecting".

  • by iluvcapra (782887) on Thursday April 14, 2011 @06:05PM (#35822758)

    Why should I settle for LESS when I leave the "desktop"?

    You're getting less both ways, the only difference is who's being honest about it.

Simplicity does not precede complexity, but follows it.

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