New iPhone OS 4.0 SDK Agreement Prohibits Use Of Flash-To-iPhone Compiler
Apple and Adobe have been at loggerheads for quite some time over the non-availability of Flash on the iPhone OS platform. While Apple has argued that a resource hogging software like Flash could drain the iPhone's battery and hence may not run on the device, Adobe has insisted that the unavailability of an ubiquitous multimedia platform like Flash could deprive iPhone users of their experience.
In a bid to make the popular multimedia platform available on the iPhone, Adobe announced their development of Flash Professional CS5 that will enable app developers to port their Flash applications to the iPhone OS with the help of ActionScript 3. The new Flash platform is expected to launch on April 12th.
However, in what may come as a huge blow to Adobe's ambitions to reach the iPhone users, Apple has modified their app developer license agreement, which prohibits the use of cross-compiler software to create iPhone apps. The new iPhone Developer Program License Agreement for iPhone OS 4 SDK notes:
While the updated agreement may appear to target Adobe, John Gruber from Daring Fireball argues that this is merely in an attempt to prevent a hijack of the iPhone's native framework by independent third party developers. Gruber writes:
"What Apple doesn’t want — and as we see now, is not going to allow — is for anyone other than Apple to define the framework for native iPhone apps. What Apple is saying here is, if you’re going to write a native iPhone app, then you need to target our platform; if you want to do something else, then target the iPhone with an optimized web app."
While it is not clear if the changes shall also affect other third party tools like Titanium and PhoneGap, there is no doubt that applications created using the Flash-to-iPhone compiler on CS5 shall not be approved. It will however be interesting to see how Adobe responds to these developments. In a recently posted tweet, the company noted that they are still studying the changes. Adobe wrote:
"We are looking into the new SDK language. We continue to develop Packager for iPhone OS which will debut in Flash"
What is your take on this? Do you see Apple's policies targeted at Adobe or do you think Cupertino is merely trying to retain control over the iPhone framework? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
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