Adobe CEO: Apple’s Decision To Ban Flash-To-iPhone Compiler Really Isn’t A Technology Decision As Much As It’s A Business Decision
April 12 was a momentous day for Adobe. The company officially unveiled its latest version of Creative Suite (CS5) that will bring a whole new version of products like Photoshop, Acrobat and InDesign to the market.
However, the unveiling was overshadowed by an Apple decision announced a couple of days earlier that banned the use of the Flash-to-iPhone compiler to develop iPhone apps.
There has been a lot of discussion over Apple's decision. While Apple obsevers like John Gruber have found the decision sensible, others have questioned the timing of Apple's announcement. In a recent interview to Fox Business, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen reiterated his earlier stand that Apple's decision to ban the use of the Flash-to-iPhone compiler among app developers was influenced by the company's need to keep its proprietary platform closed. Narayen said:
"All customers worldwide want access to Flash. Flash is synonymous with the Internet…A lack of support for Flash on any device means that the consumers using those devices are not getting Flash in all its glory… With respect to Apple, it really isn't a technology decision as much as it is a business decision and they have chosen to keep their system a proprietary and closed system, which is why they are not supporting Flash and I think that hurts customers."
Narayen also noted that Apple's decision could potentially backfire with consumers voting for rival devices in the market place. Speaking about Adobe's partnership with companies like Google, RIM and Palm that are expected to roll out Flash enabled rival tablet PCs in the second half of 2010, Narayen said:
"I think competitive response in the market place is going to happen in the second part of this year where you're going to see phones run the Android operating system from Google for example or Palm Operating system supporting the web in all its glory…And so what we think is that the consumers will eventually vote for the experience that they want through their wallet."
While Narayen has quite expectedly expressed his disappointment over Apple's decision, his statements have also revealed that the real test for the iPad and iPhone could come in the second half of 2010 when a slew of Flash enabled tablet devices and smartphone could come to the market. What do you think? Will consumers prefer an open web experience over iPhone's or iPad's user experience?
The problem is, we've heard Adobe say that they're working with their partners to bring Flash to smartphones for quite sometime now and we still have to wait until second half of 2010 to see how well it works.
iPhone was launched almost three years back and Adobe had enough time to convince Apple. We don't understand why Adobe thinks it's not a technology decision. Apple's decision is to go with HTML5, as it's the only option currently as Flash doesn't work well on any smartphone currently, let alone the iPhone.
Let us know your views in the comments.
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