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Is Adobe Killing Flash?

Well, I certainly hope so. In light of the recent analyst call where there was no mention of Flash or any Flash related products contributing to their bottom line as well as showcasing a new Flash Like HTML web animation tool called Adobe Edge, one has to wonder what is going on inside of Adobe and its strategy for building on top of the once al mighty Flash platform.

I have received a number of inquires about Corona SDK from Flash programmers who are frustrated with Adobe’s roadmap and song and dance about Flash and how with its Open Screen Project and its AIR marketplace will eventually dominate the app and distribution channels to help foster the Flash/Air/Flex cause.

It has been over 5 years since Adobe purchased Macromedia and Flash has become a second class citizen inside of Adobe. With all its engineering power and deep pockets, Flash still has mediocre performance on Android and abysmal performance on iOS devices. Only for developers to sit and wait now for more than five years.

Is Adobe Edge a symbol of Adobe throwing in the white towel into the mobile ring and giving up after all these years of trying to unsuccessfully attaining the once dominant runtime engine from the web world into “non-pc devices” or is it another bet in its arsenal of the MBA suites covering their asses in case these other platforms succeed. The argument here could be that Adobe is a big company and as any other company with deep pockets can, and will, fiddle with “emerging technologies” and they could afford to foray into un-charted, unproven “technologies”. Adobe after all, is a industry leader and a company that sets the standards. I would agree, but those days are long gone. Long gone.

Whatever it is, and however you see it or Adobe sees it, I will contend that this is a significant blow and a major black eye for Adobe for having spent $3.1 billion on Macromedia for Flash. Only to have Adobe fail to deliver and failed to capitalize on their strength on making Flash the de-facto mobile framework engine.

At the All Things Digital D9 conference, Shantanu failed to answer Mossberg critique of Flash having poor performance on Android devices, even on such devices as the Motorola Xoom. And how about the fracas on the RIMM Playbook using AIR as a core development tool on top of QNX. It is a joke. Not only that, but Shantanu played the “business model” card vs performance card when questioned about Jobs banning Flash from iOS devices. (See: Wired, April 30th, 2010 article)

Well for all of you Flash developers out there caught in the middle of the cross fire, unkept promises and a cloudy future, there is an answer for you, it is called Corona SDK, and now with SpriteLoq, you can take almost all of your Flash assets and convert them to Corona. Unlike Adobe, we are committed to deliver the overall best framework for mobile, we are focused, small, lean and we can adapt to change faster than the loud growling, chest beating, all noise but no action 800 pound gorilla.

We have had the number one game on the iTunes App store, we have the top games across all three major Android app stores, those of Amazon, Google and Barnes and Noble. We continue to have top apps across the board, and we have had a number of apps break past the one millionth download mark. A few days ago, around June 20th, Yobonja, makers of Blast Monkeys, notified us that their game blew past the 2 million download mark. They are currently tracking as the number four game overall on Android market place and number 2 right after Angry Birds in the Action games category.

Proven technology from the guys who brought you Flash-Lite.

We may not have the Adobe name but we have the un-relentless commitment on making our Corona SDK the number one framework for mobile game and app development across all major platforms, with significan focus and drive to make it happen.

Go ahead and download our Corona SDK. Try it for free. You won’t be disappointed. And don’t forget to vote for the features you most like to see implemented in Corona over at our roadmap page.

Visit our “Flash Developers You Will [Heart] Corona” page to learn about Corona vs Flash and how easy it is to get started and porting your Flash games to Corona.

Lastly, don’t get me wrong. There is the “business” of Adobe and there is the “people” of Adobe. I worked with some of the best people in there, I hold high regards for them, smart, fun, witty, brilliant, extraordinarily brilliant. It has been said that if you want to get smart, hang around smart people. And Adobe has a bunch of them and I learned a lot from them. This is not about them. This is about the “business” of Adobe and their inability to deliver. Some of them are just caught in the quagmire of big business politics where the bottom line and cost saving measures is their modus operandi.

The “oh-so-ever-loose cannon”


[now in seclusion. whereabouts unknown] And for those who want to burn me in effigy, I will be more than happy to provide you with the gasoline and matches 😉

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  1. Im testing flash(air for iphone) on my ipad right now and i have to say it is working very well. Nothing very complicated few(10-12) animated sprites moving around shooting to each other .
    And it is working also on my desktop, on samsung tv(60 fps 1280×720) , and my android phone.
    Sure we still have to wait for molehill to see more complicated games but it is far from being dead.
    Corona is great but only for mobile (and on android it is not working so well) and simple games.
    Bet we will see next year who is right:)

  2. Thank you for the post. While I think that Corona is an interesting technology, there is a scent of envy or similar over it. Focus on making Corona a great tool, instead of hitting other technologies in the head without reason. You can’t make your technology better, by talking the other down.

    With you in the Flash-Lite team it sounds to me that you left a bit too early. Flash is utilizing the platform it is allowed to stand on. By the time of iPhone arrival, there where no serious platform to use and no technology could deliver the same experience as where used to on the desktop.

    The iPhone completely changed the game. And many companies are profiting from it’s arrival – all the best to all the new business opportunities is brings.

    The Flash Platform is more than mobile. I can’t see Corona as anything else as a well performing tool for devices. I can imagine why you wan’t it dead, but don’t set your hopes too high, you may end up sounding naive.

    You know better than most of us, that Adobe has a lot of technologies and programs to support. It would be odd, not to support HTML5 and jQuery when it is a perfect fit for Dreamweaver. While Dreamweaver is a layout tool, HTML5 is in need of an animation tool that integrated well, in the existing portfolio … I believe Edge is a good start – maybe even the solution.

    I don’t get your wrong. And I hear you on the talk about the Adobe Team, but when you are as engaged in a project as you are, it’s sometimes easy to get subjective – when you only have a hammer, all problem looks like nails.

    Keep up the good work, and go for the ball instead of the man. Corona may end up even more succesful than it is now. Badmouthing other, while promoting yourself doesn’t make you shine.

    Now, don’t get ME wrong. I just read your post, and thought that it was ready for a friendly advice.

    BTW: I didn’t engage in your conclusions in the post. While some of them may also be arguable, I only reffered to the tone of voice, and the odd mix of advertising and badmouthing :-)

    All the best, and good luck

    NB: Yes, I love Adobe products AND Open Technologies. I am being objective here so please, don’t slap my face with arguments down that road :-)