Filed under: Android, Featured, Google, Microsoft, Mobile App, Technology News
Apple’s CEO wrote a thoughtful post about Adobe Flash and explained the reasons why Apple doesn’t intend to add support for Flash to the iPhone OS:
“Flash was created during the PC era – for PCs and mice. Flash is a successful business for Adobe, and we can understand why they want to push it beyond PCs. But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short.”
Steve Jobs says that Flash doesn’t perform well on mobile devices, it drains the battery and it’s not optimized for touch interfaces. Flash is also a way to create cross-platform applications, but Apple doesn’t want applications that look the same way on all mobile platforms and don’t take advantage of iPhone’s features. “We cannot be at the mercy of a third party” is the main reason why Steve Jobs doesn’t want to include Flash’s runtime. Flash’s main use today is to play videos, but web developers should start using the native video tag, which is already supported by most web browsers, including iPhone’s browser.
Apple’s refusal to support Flash in popular products like iPhone or iPad has an important side-effect: web developers will be forced to take advantage of HTML5 features like native video, canvas or create animations using SVG, instead of/in addition to using Adobe’s proprietary plug-in.
Unfortunately, users can’t access a lot of content on their mobile devices. There are many sites built using Flash and many popular sites use Flash to create animations, charts and other interactive content. Adobe is already working on Flash Player 10.1, the first version of the plug-in that will work on smartphones, if you don’t take into account Flash Lite. Flash will soon be available for Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian, Palm and Google will include the plug-in in Chrome and Chrome OS. Flash Player 10.1 for Android will be available as a public preview in May at Google I/O and the general release will be in June.
Google’s decision is pragmatic: even if HTML5 is the future, Flash is an important part of the web today. “[Sometimes being open] means not being militant about the things consumer are actually enjoying,” said Google’s Andy Rubin. Users will be able to choose if they want to enable Flash and Adobe will be pressured to deliver a better product.
Some might say that Android is actually the anti-iPhoneOS: it’s an open source operating system, it encourages competition and collaboration in the mobile space, it lets you replace built-in functionality, install applications from other sources than the Android Market and customize your device. Android is not “at the mercy of a third party”, but third parties can add a lot of value. Even if Android’s user experience is inferior to iPhone’s user experience, Android is an open platform that can be fully customized and a better catalyst for innovation. Android doesn’t strive for perfection, it’s a flexible platform that lets you transform a device into whatever you want it to be.
Worldwide CTR Index (Click Through Rate) by Handset Operating System
Chart 1: Smaato Index – Operating System CTR (Click Through Rates) worldwide, March 2010
The performance of different operating systems in March shows Symbian’s lead decrease slightly, as Feature Phone handsets and Windows Phone make significant increases. The CTR Index (Click Through Rate) differs from 35 (Blackberry) to 156 (Symbian), compared to February where the spread was between 51 (Blackberry) and 147 (Symbian).
Android has suffered the most in the latest metrics, with a drop of almost 50% as its global CTR Index fell from 110 in February, to 58 in March. This has been the second consecutive month that Android has dropped. Feature Phone handsets have been building momentum since the first Smaato Metrics Report in December. Each month it has made consistent gains on the competition in the CTR Index, from 84 in December, to 91 in January, to 107 in February and now at 123 in March.
The Index consists of the average CTR of all devices and this number is set to 100.
Symbian’s lead has shortened in the CTR Index table and remains the OS to beat with regards to CTR performance in mobile advertising. Feature Phones have been making steady ground, where as Apple remains consistent across February and March (89).
Chart 2: Smaato Index – Operating System CTR (Click Through Rates) worldwide, Q1 2010
Read full story in http://metrics.smaato.com/march10